Grocer to make its debut north of the border
John Lewis-owned supermarket group Waitrose is to open its first branches in Scotland after buying a handful of stores from Somerfield.

It is taking over two Somerfield-owned shops - Morrisons at Morningside in Lothian and Somerfield at Comely Bank in Edinburgh - which will be rebranded as Waitrose and will open in June.

The other three stores are at Buxton in Derbyshire and Balham and Barbican in London. They will bring the total number of Waitrose food shops to 179.

John Lewis has been established in Scotland for 33 years and has department stores in Glasgow, Edinburgh and Aberdeen.

Waitrose managing director Steve Esom is promising to add locally sourced produce to its Scottish stores and said that more Edinburgh shops are likely in the future, possibly followed by expansion across Scotland.

'We have been looking at Scotland for some time but, until four years ago, our most northerly store was in Grantham so distribution has been the issue,' he said.