Forecourt Trader - 30 years at the heart of the fuel retailing community

New car sales exceed expectations

The increase in retail car sales in September has exceeded expectations, according to the RMI National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA).

OFT agrees to simplify questionnaire for indies

The Office of Fair Trading has modified its ‘call for information’ questionnaire to make it less complex and daunting for independent retailers to fill out.

An extra £20m will be squeezed from motorists as Dartford toll rises 50p

Sunday’s 33% hike in the cost of using the Dartford crossing, used by 140 million motorists each year, to £2 should not go ahead says the AA.  It believes that to take an extra £20 million from drivers each year, while they sit in queues with no firm plans for a new crossing, is unacceptable.

European hydrogen road tour visits the UK

The UK’s first public-access hydrogen refuelling station was host to seven fuel-cell cars today (October 4), as they filled up at Swindon on the UK leg of the H2 Moves European Hydrogen Road Tour.

Fuel sales down by half a billion litres

Nearly half a billion fewer litres of petrol and diesel were sold between April and June than during the same period last year, according to new figures from the Department of Energy and Climate Change.

New eco fuel log comes to the UK

A naturally created and environmentally friendly heat log has been launched into the UK market as an alternative to wooden logs.

Motorists cut back on shopping and going out to keep car on the road

The increasing costs of running a car are forcing nearly three quarters of drivers (70%) to make cut-backs to their outgoings to keep themselves motoring, according to research by

Retailers get the chance to meet OFT reps

Independent retailers will have the opportunity to privately meet with representatives from the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) at ForecourtExpo this Thursday (October 4) to talk about their response to its call for information on the fuel retailing sector.

New deals boost Esso retail branded sites by 20%

Esso has secured fuel supply deals with the UK's two largest dealer groups in a move that the company says will boost the total number of Esso-branded retail sites by around 20% to more than 1,100 service stations.

GB Oils buys indie Calanike

GB Oils has acquired the trading assets of Top 50 Indie Calanike Retailing, the 19-strong filling station network with sites in Scotland and Northern England.

High profile indie retailer quits trade

Former Forecourt Trader of the Year Jonathan James is to exit petrol station operation as his company James Graven leases its final two forecourts to BP.

Euro Garages renews deal

Top 50 Indie Euro Garages is to continue its long-standing partnership with BP after renewing its fuel agreement across 62 sites.

Top marks for Symonds

Budgens of Wells, owned by Top 50 Indie Symonds Forecourts, was revealed as this year's Forecourt Trader of the Year at the London Hilton Hotel in Park Lane last month. The overall award was presented to managing director Nick Lloyd (centre right), and store manager Jason Tamplin (centre left). The company's chief executive Jeremy Symonds had been injured in a charity cycle ride and was unable to attend. See page 49 for the full report.

in brief

Shell on-the-go

James Lowman

We've just published our first-ever Local Shop Report in which we have combined some of the well-known data on the sector with new ACS research which sheds light on the real value of local shops. The results show more vividly than ever that c-stores whether they operate on a petrol forecourt or are standalone are a crucial part of the economy. Here's why:

Renovation creates 20 jobs at Simon Smith

The Simon Smith Group has created 20 new jobs after completing the renovation of its Daventry site using a £1m loan from Lloyds TSB Commercial.

Westmorland wins Petroman competition

Andy Smith, group forecourt manager of Westmorland, is the winner of the Forecourt Trader/Petroman competition for the installation of a full Petroman vapour saving system.

MPK confirms GB supply deal

Top 50 Indie MPK Garages has confirmed that eight free-of-tie filling stations, recently purchased from Rontec Investments, will be supplied by GB Oils under the Total brand. MPK currently has 38 sites, situated predominantly within the East and West Midlands. By reinvesting in its operation, the Leicester-based business has been able to expand its network and achieve strong growth, particularly in shop sales, despite the testing economic climate.

Star buy

A petrol station and c-store business that has been owned by the same family for more than 50 years has been sold to the Chelmsford Star Co-operative Society for just under £2m by property advisers Christie & Co. Jones of Chelmsford was owned by brothers Chris and Peter Jones, who have now retired.

Faster speeds with Christ

Christ Wash Systems is using new technology to make car wash speeds quicker and reduce the energy consumption of its machines.

Media on Horizon

Gilbarco Veeder-Root has integrated its Applause Europe multi-media onto the Horizon H-frame dispenser, making the screens available on all multi-product dispensers.

Cash is king for S&B

Scheidt & Bachmann has added the option of an integrated bank note accepter to its Clou multi-media pay-at-pump dispenser.

Entry-level dispenser

Tokheim has launched the Quantium 510E entry-level multi-product dispenser into the UK market. The pump is said to provide an effortless fuelling experience for motorists, and has a hose retraction solution with up to 3.2m hose reach for quick and convenient filling.

Istobal adds M'Start

Istobal has launched an entry-level rollover car wash called M'Start, designed for wash facilities with a capacity of 800 to 1,200 vehicles a month.

Equipment column: Kevin Eastwood

More than 1,100 retailers have joined the BOSS Payment Watch debt recovery scheme, and thanks to joint working between retailers, BOSS, our police partners and the Crown Prosecution Service, significant numbers of criminals are now facing justice.

WashTec combines brush and touchless washing

WashTec's Softcare2 Pro Touchless car wash is being made available as a pure high-pressure system or a combined system with the gentle SofTecs washing material, giving car wash customers the choice between touching, touchless or a combination of the two options.

Wheel rim wash and five-brush rollover

Karcher has launched a number of innovations including a five-brush rollover car wash and an alkaline wheel rim cleaner.

shop talk

Earlier in the year, I read that Red Bull was going to be launched in three new flavours. As it's such an important product for forecourt stores, I've been keeping an eye on the story. Indeed, recently I contacted Red Bull to find out what was happening but was told 'there is no news on flavours yet'.

Five-minute perfection

A new 'Bake Perfect Bag' allows consumers to cook Birds Eye's Bake to Perfection products in less than five minutes in the microwave or oven bake as before, if preferred.

Roaring in

New from Burton's Biscuit Company is Cadbury Mini Animals dinosaurs. The biscuits come in a six-bag multipack with a rrp of £1.69. Support comes from sampling and pos.

Fashionable promo

Kinder Bueno is running a 'Fabulous Fashion' on-pack promotion where there are two prizes from top high street brands to be won every day for 60 days.

Especially good crisps

Kellogg's is launching Special K cracker crisps. They come in sea salt & balsamic vinegar, sweet chilli, and sour cream & onion varieties in individual bags and sharing cartons.

Offer with the X Factor

PepsiCo and Britvic have joined forces for an on-pack promotion with The X Factor Live Final.

Kettle Classics back for 30th birthday

As part of its 30th birthday celebrations, Kettle Chips is re-releasing two classic flavours sea salt, rosemary & garlic and blue stilton & port for a limited period. The flavours were chosen by fans who voted on Facebook. Both are available in 150g bags, with a rrp of £1.85.

New premium ciggies

New from Imperial Tobacco is premium-priced Davidoff iD, available exclusively in selected areas of the South East. Rrp is £7.75. Designed to "enhance the everyday smoking experience", Davidoff iD uses an American blend. There are two variants: orange (full flavour) and blue (smooth). Packs feature an interactive glide mechanism which reveals a selection of modern art designs, inspired by everyday objects. Imperial Tobacco's head of consumer marketing, Amy Kiss, said sales of premium-priced cigarettes are going from strength to strength in the Greater London and the South East.

Pringles pops more

Pringles is introducing a new salt & pepper line to the convenience sector.

Bubbly and minty

Kraft Foods is launching a mint version of its popular Cadbury Dairy Milk (CDM) Bubbly. The new bar has a thin layer of mint creme on top of aerated bubbly milk chocolate.

Seasonal sellers

Premier Foods has unveiled its Christmas range. The Mr Kipling line-up has refreshed packaging which is in line with the pack design launched earlier this year on the existing range.

Phat start to the day

he Phat Pasty Company has launched Phat porridge in a single serve, 'just add boiling water' pot, which is now available nationally.

Safe travel for mugs

Muggi is a convenient new tray that allows users to carry up to four mugs one handed. It also has four non-slip rubber feet so you can rest it safely on uneven surfaces. Made from lightweight but super tough recycled plastic, Muggi comes in blue, pink, grey and red. Muggi designer and owner, David Trotter, explained: "The original prototype was designed to combat breakages and spillages on board boats and yachts, however it soon became clear to me that it provided a safe way of carrying hot drinks just about anywhere"

Cracking Christmas lines coming soon from Ginsters

Ginsters has announced its Christmas 2012 line-up. This comprises two special edition sandwiches: the Christmas cracker and cranberry, Wensleydale & bacon; plus a special edition turkey, bacon & cranberry pasty.

Fuel prices – September 26, 2012


FairFuelUK campaigns for tax take to be shown on fuel receipts

Fuel price campaign group FairFuelUK is backing a move in Parliament to get the amount of tax that the government gets from motorists when they fill up with fuel shown on the till receipt.

Good riddance to cowboy clampers as new parking rules come into force

Monday October 1 is 'Ban Day' for private wheel clampers when clamping on most private land will be outlawed after a long AA campaign.

First of the new OPW Avance fuel equipment rolls off the production

OPW Fueling Components EMEA, a global business unit of OPW Fueling Components Group, has announced that the first fueling nozzles, breakaways and hoses from its AVANCE product family have come off the production line at its European manufacturing facility in Prague, Czech Republic in compliance with ISO and ATEX standards and regulations.

AA highlights growing population of elderly drivers

Older drivers need to take control of their driving safety and ask healthcare professionals if they are safe to continue behind the wheel, according to the AA Charitable Trust, as it reveals there are now more than one million drivers over the age of 80 on the road.

Focus on EPOS: Mobile future

We use mobile phones for almost everything these days to find our way, for online shopping, or just generally surfing the net so why not pay for fuel with one? There may be a few regulatory hurdles to overcome first but mobile payment on forecourts could be a lot closer than people think.

Merril Boulton: Opportunity knocks

Right, before you do anything else this month, make sure you download a copy of the Office of Fair Trading's questionnaire (see News Extra page 10).

Your industry needs you

Retailers have until October 18 to respond to an Office of Fair Trading (OFT) questionnaire as part of its assessment of the UK petrol and diesel fuel sector to identify whether or not there are competition problems it can tackle.

Shop Doctor: City Service Station, Commercial Road, Hereford

GENERAL APPEARANCE: In Hereford, the A4103 from Worcester leads into the busy Commercial Road. City Service Station looks like a recent conversion to a smart Harvest Energy site.

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Weekly retail fuel prices: 10 June 2019
RegionDieselLPGSuper ULUL
East Midlands134.59140.57129.69
North East133.19142.40129.15
North West134.1363.90139.73129.13
Northern Ireland131.34135.32128.05
South East135.2562.40141.74130.52
South West134.5167.90140.57129.57
West Midlands134.34140.64129.70
Yorkshire & Humber133.72140.40129.24

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As ESSO and BP join Shell and Gulf in launching new loyalty programmes this year, are such schemes a key tool for businesses today?