DIGGERS have moved in to level a new car park in Leigh.

The site of Overtons former car garage in Leigh Broadway will be transformed into a car park and opened in two weeks time.

The rundown site, behind the Grand Hotel, will have parking for 40 cars, and be open from 9am until 7pm.

Christmas shoppers will be able to make use of the extra room in the cramped Broadway.

Clive Shiret, owner of Southend parking firm CS Parkng Ltd, said: “We are hoping to be in place to allow Leigh council to site some of their light ceremony there.

“We will have it manned for the first few weeks then it will be pay and display in the new year. On Saturdays it will be manned so people get a better service.

“We are just getting everything together, waiting to get the electric and then we will be ready in a week or so.”

Developer McCarthy and Stone wanted to build 33 retirement flats on the land, owned by Elmore Contractors, but it was turned down by councillors and on appeal in 2010. CS Parking won an appeal to make it a car park for two years.

Businesses have welcomed the news and say it will boost their trade for Christmas.

Sue Fountain, who works at Glances clothes shop in Leigh Broadway, said she was pleased there would be more parking.

She said: “The more parking the better for businesses round here. I do think it will encourage people to come in and do their shopping, one of the main reasons people don’t is because of the parking.

“It is the biggest thing customers complain about.

“It is definitely a good thing.”