THE STORE manager of one of The Lexicon's most highly anticipated stores has spoken of his pride as the development opens. 

Fenwick is one of the biggest units in the new town and sells everything from designer handbags to teddy bears, with a restaurant on the top and bottom floor. 

As the new department store moved in Bentalls closed to make way, having been in the town for more than 40 years. 

Craig Strugnell, Fenwick store director, managed the old Bentalls store, and has been in Bracknell for nine years. In that time he has watched the town raised to the ground and brought back up again. 

He confirmed that every member of staff at both the Bentalls Bracknell store and Fenwick Windsor store was offered a role at the new branch. 

"We hope that customers will find, as well as everything else, the most amazing customer service. We've got a brilliant Fenwick team that we've assembled out of Windsor and out of the old Bracknell store," he said. 

"We've got a group of new people who have joined us as well, and it's all of that that makes us different and unique.

"There's a huge amount of pressure opening a store of this size. We've got 280 members of staff, three floors, 80,000 sq ft. It's a huge amount of work, and has been going on for many, many years to get us to this stage. 

"I don't think it's any different to building a standalone store. 

"What makes it different, perhaps easier, or perhaps more certain that it's the right thing to do, is to know that the local customer has waited for thirty, thirty five years.

"We got past that stage where perhaps many people thought it was never going to happen, and we've got that huge wave of enthusiasm and eagerness to watch the town develop. 

"This development is such a fantastic thing for the town, and we're sure it's going to be a success."

Fenwick had its soft launch the night before The Lexicon opened, with a string quartet performing while shoppers were given an exclusive look around.

"In terms of size, this is a little larger than the old Bentalls store, in terms of brand mix, you'll probably find most of the brands that we had in the old store, but you'll also find a huge range of premium brands that we couldn't accommodate.

"Brands like Mulberry, Coach, Michael Koors, these are brands that in the old store we couldn't do justice to, but the new store is.

"The old store was a traditional department store, the new one is more of an experience. "here's lots of brands that we sell that we're not trying to pretend we have a whole range of unique brands, what we do have is a unique experience. 

"All of those brands are done in a new way, and we've added new experiences in, that involves the LED screens around the store, the ten huge screens in the atrium, we've got a talking tree for children and toddlers, we've got a magic tree that plays music as you walk under it, magic mirror that turns you into a pirate or a princess.

"We've got a men's barber, a nail bar, a blow-dry bar, two brands that thread and wax eyebrows, these things we couldn't accommodate in the old store."

Fenwick is located in The Lexicon on the corner of The Avenue and Braccan walk.