DARTFORD'S Waitrose store has closed after a decade with rumours rife that budget German supermarket Aldi will soon be moving in.

The prime site in the Orchard Shopping Centre is not expected to stay vacant for long, according to Dartford Council leader Councillor Jeremy Kite.

More than 120 people will move to a new store or become unemployed.

News Shopper asked Aldi to comment on the rumours and a spokesman said: "Our comment is that we have no comment at this time" but they did confirm they were looking at opportunities in the town.

Research by Which? has revealed Aldi has beaten Waitrose as the nation's favourite supermarket.

Mr Kite said: "This is an important unit and I am confident the new tenants will have a good offer for Dartford.

"I am sorry to see Waitrose go and it's a shame for the staff.

"It is just vital the unit is not left vacant for long and it is not always important about the name above the door."

Waitrose closed last Tuesday and staff performed the conga before it shut. Waitrose' lease doesn't expire until the end of March.

It is expected Aldi will then make an announcement.