Forecourt Trader of the Year winner Patrick Sewell is to become chair of the Association of Convenience Stores. He will take on the chairmanship of ACS from November 1, 2016, having served as deputy chair since 2014. and will replace Palmer and Harvey group strategy and development director Paul Hagon, who remains on the ACS board.

Patrick Sewell is the managing director of Hull-based Top 50 Indie Sewell On the Go, and, following the success at this year’s ceremony, with the group’s South Cave site, is a two-time winner of the most prestigious award in fuel retailing.

Patrick began his retail career in 1998, managing one of Sewell Group’s fuel and convenience stores in Hull. By 2001 the Sewell Retail portfolio had grown to five stores and Patrick was appointed as company director. Since his appointment Patrick has grown the business to 12 stores that now serve more than four million customers a year. Patrick joined the ACS board in 2011.

He said: “Like many convenience store operators, I could not run my business without the representation, support, information and contacts I get from ACS. It’s a great honour for the board to ask me to chair ACS, and I am very much looking forward to working with them and the ACS executive team to ensure that we continue to grow as a powerful and effective lobby group for convenience store retailers.”

“I would like to thank Paul Hagon for his commitment to ACS over the past two years in the position of chairman. Under his leadership, ACS has become even more relevant and respected in Government and has seen a continued growth in the number of stores we represent.”

On becoming ACS vice chair, Debbie Robinson said: “The role of ACS is crucial to the success of the independent retailer and I am delighted to be involved with an organisation that commits itself unwaveringly to supporting the convenience industry.”

Current ACS chair Paul Hagon said: “We are delighted that Patrick has taken the chairman’s role. He has already made a huge contribution as vice chair, and is admired and respected across the sector for the outstanding business he runs. We also welcome Debbie to the vice chair role, whose wealth of experience will be invaluable in driving ACS forward in the future.”