Hemel Hempstead’s newly-expanded H&M store opens with launch party

The doors to H&M’s new double-sized store opened to queues of excited shoppers in Hemel Hempstead town centre today.

Customers lined up outside the Riverside Shopping Centre unit – which has now taken over the empty space next door left by the closure of music retailer HMV in March – in order to get their free wristbands offering 25 per cent discount in store.

Opening of the newly expanded H&M store in Hemel Hempstead town centre.

Opening of the newly expanded H&M store in Hemel Hempstead town centre.

Goody bags including a travel kit with cosmetics, a shopper bag, laptop case and a magazine were also handed out among the crowds, and a DJ booth was set up inside the new fashion store to entertain shoppers all day.

Riverside centre manager David Robinson said: “It’s great to see a global brand investing in Hemel Hempstead. This, along with other new lettings recently made here at Riverside, has really boosted the high street’s confidence.

“Although it was sad to see the demise of the HMV unit, it is a very positive story for Hemel that H&M are willing to take the unit over.

“We saw from the crowds this morning that it is going to be a very popular store.”

A DJ entertains shoppers at the opening of the newly expanded H&M store in Hemel Hempstead town centre.

A DJ entertains shoppers at the opening of the newly expanded H&M store in Hemel Hempstead town centre.

The Swedish fashion giant has remained open throughout the six-week refurbishment and now offers more stock in women’s, men’s and childrenswear departments, as well as space for the new ‘Divided’ range and lingerie and sportswear sections.

Customers were also given bags to fill up with unwanted clothes which, if they bring them to the new store, can be exchanged for a £5 H&M voucher.