A £300,000 expansion project at a Spar forecourt store near Bristol Airport has been completed following a co-investment scheme between owner Justin Taylor and Appleby Westward, the regional distribution company for Spar stores in the south west.
The store, at Littleton Mills, near Winford, has doubled in size in order to meet the growing convenience shopping needs of people in the Chew Valley area.
“The redevelopment has transformed the business into a destination store for the local community, firmly establishing us as a convenience store that happens also to sell fuel,” said Justin.
The project represents the second phase of an expansion of the store at the Winford Ford dealership which began at the end of 2012. This saw the shop extended to 1,300sq ft with the introduction of an improved food-to-go service, Costa coffee and an extended range of chilled foods and beers wines and spirits.
Justin said: “The first stage of the refit was a great success with our customers and sales overall, and gave us the confidence to go for an even more ambitious development to double the size to 2,500sq ft. We are creating the feel of a small supermarket, but without losing our appeal as a local community store which we have built up since moving to Spar nearly 10 years ago.
“Our long-standing staff know our customers and we engage in local community activities, and these are important assets that set us apart from the competition.”
The store features the latest specification in Spar signage and layout with lower level racking, enabling customers to view the whole store on entering. The store is open from 6.30am-10.00pm seven days a week and has parking for 12 cars. It offers customers an extensive range of fresh fruit and vegetables, including loose produce, an expanded selection of fresh meat and a wider range of chilled and locally-produced products.
Freshly baked bread is available daily, along with some speciality breads, and an expanded foodservice offer is available under the Daily Deli banner. The off licence has extended to include chilled white wines, beers and ciders along with other wines and spirits.
The business was initially run by Justin’s father Geoff, who established it in 1967. Ten years ago, he recognised that the forecourt shop would only progress under a symbol group, and chose Spar. Justin joined the company and has developed the convenience business from there.
“We chose Spar because it is the leading convenience brand and has such a good image,” said Justin. “It has been a very important partnership. There is no doubt that the conversion to Spar has transformed the business over the last few years, and helped establish our strong reputation for convenience shopping throughout the Chew Valley area.”
Appleby Westward sales director Nick Kenworthy said: “We are delighted to co-invest with Justin, having enjoyed a great partnership over the last 10 years. We have set aside £2m for co-investment in store development schemes with Spar retailers in the region throughout 2016, and every Spar store in our territory will be the subject of a refit or refreshed look over the next five years in order to meet the forecast growth in convenience shopping.”