Discount supermarket Aldi has applied to extend its opening hours in four Northumberland stores.

The proposals for shops in Hexham, Cramlington, Ashington and Blyth would see their trading hours amended to between 6am – midnight, seven days a week.

In addition, it has also applied for an alcohol licence for a planned store in Bedlington.

The German retailer has previously said it hopes to open its new outlet in the town before the end of 2021 as part of a £4.8m investment in Northumberland.

And according to papers lodged with Northumberland County Council (NCC), shoppers could be heading to the shelves in just a few weeks, with a request to begin trading from November 1.

If approved, it would allow opening hours, including booze sales, to run between 6am – midnight, seven days a week, although actual trading times may be different.

Bedlington is due to be the second Aldi store to open in the county this year, following its outpost in Prudhoe, with recruitment ongoing for cleaners and apprentice managers, among other positions.

The chain is also believed to have its eye on further expansion into Morpeth and Ponteland.

Any comments on the Bedlington application should be submitted to the county council’s licensing department by Tuesday, October 12.

Members of the public have until October 25 to offer their views on the company’s other four applications.

Aldi has been contacted for further details.