Shoppers queue as former McEwens store reopens as Beales

A sea of shoppers descended on Scotland’s newest department store as it opened its doors for the first time.

Beales welcomed its first customers on Thursday morning, breathing new life into the landmark McEwens of Perth building.

The store has stood empty for more than 18 months since McEwens’ shock closure last summer.

Bournemouth-based Beales struck a deal to take on the building just eight weeks ago.

After what boss Tony Brown described as a “Herculean” effort by staff, the store was ready for the grand opening.

Dozens of shoppers gathered outside for the 9.30am launch, with the promise of gift vouchers for the first 50 customers to spend £50.

John Bullough, former boss of McEwens of Perth, said he hoped the new venture would be a success.

Mr Bullough who heads the local City Development Board – overseeing a 20-year masterplan for the area – said: “Perth in general and St John Street in particular have always had a proud tradition of speciality shopping.

“Beales are a perfect fit for the McEwens building and I wish them the very best of luck in their new venture.”