A world-renowned toy store chain has been ‘inundated’ with job applications from people who want to work at its first outlet in Bradford.

Toys R Us has announced plans to hold a grand opening to launch its new store at Manningham Lane Retail Park, at the junction of Hamm Strasse and Manningham Lane, next month.

Over recent weeks, the company has been recruiting staff to fill up to 50 vacancies at the new store and has handed out more than 5,000 application forms to job hunters.

At the last count, Toys R Us had received about 1,500 applications.

The store’s management team is now in place and includes a local store manager and five local store supervisors.

Harry Tranter, who has been appointed as store manager after holding the deputy manager’s role at the Leeds outlet, said: “We have been inundated with applications. It has been better than we could ever have imagined. The people we have been getting are absolutely brilliant. The people of Bradford that we have seen have been great.

“I’m told it has created a real buzz around the job centre.”

To mark the store’s opening costumed characters, including Bob the Builder and Dora the Explorer along with Toys R Us mascot Geoffrey the Giraffe, will entertain from 9am on Saturday, October 23. A Toys R Us spokesman said: “It will be a fun morning of celebration and we would urge people to come down and help to give the store a great launch.

“Bradford is an area we have been desperately trying to get into for many years and we are pleased to have finally found the right location.

“We have been recruiting for up to 50 jobs over the last couple of weeks.

“We have got a management team in place now and we are delighted with the response we have had.

“We have been taken aback by the level of interest and the general enthusiasm of people applying for jobs.

“It’s not just the numbers that has been impressive, it’s also the quality of people.”

Councillor Dave Green, Bradford Council’s executive member for regeneration, said: “We welcome the investment of Toys R Us and the employment that they are bringing to the area.

“It also widens the retail offer for the people of the district and we look forward to working with them to help support them once the site is completed.

“It shows there is still a willingness by big retail companies to invest in the Bradford district.”