Hundreds of jobs at London Gateway warehouse

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionPrime Minister David Cameron said the new port would handle 3.5 million containers a year

Hundreds of jobs will be created in south Essex when Marks and Spencer builds a new distribution centre.

The company is the first confirmed tenant of the logistics park which will be built next to the London Gateway container port near Thurrock.

Up to 700 jobs will be created by M&S at the 900,000 sq ft (86, 612 sq m) warehouse, due to open in 2016.

Prime Minister David Cameron said London Gateway was "an emblem of ambition" during a visit earlier.

Image caption Artist's impression of the M&S distribution centre at London Gateway Logistics Park

'Agile supply chain'

The port, which is bigger than London's Olympic Park and will handle 3.5 million containers a year, will open later this year.

It will also have what DP World, the company building London Gateway, said will be Europe's biggest logistics park to handle the imported cargo.

Construction starts next year.

The M&S warehouse will be the company's third large distribution centre in the UK.

Marc Bolland, the company's chief executive, said it would help "transform our logistics operations into a modern and agile supply chain".

Simon Moore, chief executive of DP World said: "By bringing ships carrying millions of products closer to the point of consumption we will help M&S to shorten its supply chain."

More on this story