BARGAIN hunters were out in force on Saturday as they flooded through the doors of Gloucester's new B&M Bargains store.
Thousands of city shoppers snapped up goods on the opening day for the discount retailer, which has unveiled a huge branch in Southgate Street.
The shop, in the former Marks & Spencer store, sprawls across two floors, crammed with household goods, toys, food and novelty items.
It's 2012's answer to Woolworths – and shoppers with tightened purses love it.
Pensioner Peter Dowding, 78, from Longlevens, said: "I think it is very good. This is what Gloucester needs right now and it is better than an empty shop sitting idle."
He snapped up an early Christmas pudding and some other cakes.
Hospital worker Eileen Jones, from Quedgeley, said: "It is lovely in there.
"I've been to them in Ireland and I'm delighted they are here in Gloucester because they have such a variety and everything is reasonably priced."
She bought a selection of crisps and chocolates.
Martin Davis and Julie Haywood, also from Quedgeley, spent £29 on their shopping, which included kitchen utensils and diet drinks.
Mr Davis said: "This is better than the 99p shops. They serve their purpose, but this is different. They have some better quality products."
Carol and Philip Cole, from Longlevens, purchased cat biscuits, Christmas products and tea bags.
Mrs Cole said: "We had a good look around and upstairs they have a nice household section. I was impressed."
The shop has taken on 70 workers and, if trade goes well, more people could be taken on.
Store manager Richard Coley said the shop was pitching itself against retailers such as Argos rather than 99p stores.
He said: "This is a huge bargain store on two floors, but we also have a big range of higher quality products at very good prices.
"Customers have been flooding in all morning since the doors first opened so we are delighted with how it's going."