A grocery store devastated by fire is to re-open next month, a year after the blaze.

The Londis in Shenfield Road, Woodford Green, has been boarded up since June after the blaze destroyed the roof of the three-storey building and people living nearby recently called for clarification over the building’s future.

They said the store provides a key service for the community, especially the elderly and young families.

Owner Dinesh Patel originally submitted a planning application to expand the living space above the shop, but has now confirmed his commitment to opening the store as soon as possible.

He also confirmed he was in the process of transferring the lease to a new manager, with a target completion date of early May.

Iain Duncan Smith MP and Conservative activist, Tom McLaren, supported residents in their campaign, said: “Many local residents are elderly, or have young families, and for them in particular the store provides a key service, so getting this pledge of support from the owners is a really pleasing.”