Forecourt Trader - 30 years at the heart of the fuel retailing community
Denise Andrew (right) with Jim and Wendy Bamford
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Bank helps couple live their dream

A couple from Stevenage are now running their own forecourt after securing six-figure funding from Bank of Scotland Corporate.
Data supplied by Catalist
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Fuel Prices: June 26, 2006

In brief

Statoil has reached agreement on the terms of the sale of Statoil Ireland, its downstream Retail and Commercial & Industrial business, to Topaz, a financial consortium led by Ion Equity. Topaz is an established national forecourt retailer, based in Dublin, which acquired the Shell Ireland service station network in 2005. It operates a network of over 150 service stations under the Shell brand.

Emission impossible?

After years of consultation, smaller sites have been given a reprieve as the government finalises new legislation to curb vapour emissions from petrol pumps. Final plans for implementing stage II vapour recovery - officially known as Petrol Vapour Recovery II - mean that service stations selling more than 3.5m litres of petrol a year will be required to fit expensive equipment by a deadline of 1 January 2010 - and the Petrol Retailer's Association has warned that those unable to meet the installation and maintenance costs could close.

Shop Doctor: Keystore/BP - Clerkenleap Service Station, Broomhall, Worcester

With competition increasing each year it has never been more important for retailers to demonstrate that customer service is ingrained in every part of their business. With this in mind, I was keen to see if the recently re-opened Clerkenleap Service Station at Broomhall, Worcester was applying this philosophy.
Data supplied by EKW group
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Database: DIY?

A growing number of forecourt retailers are finding that retailing isn't actually now expected to be their main role at all. In days gone by they were told by the oil companies that their main function was 'front of house' but today they are often finding themselves expected to do another job altogether - namely the paperwork and administration for five or six sites, and some DIY accounting in their 'lunch break'.

Service Centre with Jac Roper

Some of you - those sterling few who never procrastinate and applied for their 'grandfather' licensing rights early to beat the rush are now finding they are being billed for their renewal fees early too. Councils are making up their own policy on this one because central government didn't spell out this precise little wrinkle in the new Licensing Act.

Sweet & sour

Toxic Waste, Atomic FireBlast and Gum Powder can all be found on the shelves of the Murco garage in the Willesborough suburb of Ashford, Kent, and manager, Roberto Di Duca, says he can't get enough of them. Of course they are not as bad as their names suggest, but are just the latest in a long line of kids' sweets. Roberto says the 69p Brain Lickers are particularly popular: "They come in boxes of 12 and I sell between seven and eight boxes a week." Brain Lickers are described as a 'sour candy drink' and delivered in a roll-on deodorant-style dispenser. The Murco garage is situated within yards of two large secondary schools and is also en route to several other schools. Roberto recently put in a 1m sugar confectionery display (six shelves deep), supplied by Bonds, right next to the till to satisfy the demands of the sweet-toothed children. This is home to dozens of gaudy novelty sweets with names like Mega Mouth candy spray, Snot Shots, Garbage Trolley and Fizz Bombs. Bonds supplies the bulk of the sweets but Roberto also goes to the Booker Cash & Carry depot in Folkestone to see what's available. His wife Lucy is his secret weapon: "She comes with me and picks out what she thinks will sell and she's always right," he says.

Simple safety solution

Tektroniks has developed a small, easy-to-use, food temperature control system specifically for c-stores and forecourts.

Free EPoS system in TV tie-up deal

Point4 is offering forecourt operators a free EPoS system if they sign up to take its new in-store TV concept. Described as 'shelf-edge TV', the in-store advertising medium uses small plasma screens, which sit on the edge of the shelf in front of the products. Point 4 says that when a retailer signs up to take the TV system, they will give them a free HTec HydraPos system worth £12-15,000 - which combines EPoS and pump control in one unit - as well as the screens.

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Weekly retail fuel prices: 24 February 2020
RegionDieselLPGSuper ULUL
East Midlands127.70137.72124.65
North East125.92136.20122.89
North West126.8567.57135.95124.01
Northern Ireland124.76130.73121.98
South East128.6564.90139.38125.39
South West127.77135.04124.41
West Midlands127.58140.14124.60
Yorkshire & Humber126.87137.50123.73

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Has the Government's shock announcement to bring forward the ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel-powered vehicles - as well as hybrids - to 2035 or even earlier caused concern and disruption to your future forecourt development plans?

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