Two forecourts were recognised at wholesaler Palmer and Harvey’s Pro Retail gala dinner in Telford last night (May 30).

Refuel and Go’s Bradwell Service Station in Braintree was honoured with the Symbol Retailer of the Year Award. Despite having only opened in July 2012, and with no previous customer base, the store looks set to achieve shop sales approaching £20,000 a week by the end of the year. It has made excellent use of Palmer and Harvey’s planograms, has a welcoming hot food area and friendly staff.

Woodgate Service Station, located just outside of Birmingham, won Forecourt Retailer of the Year after going through a complete re-fit that included the introduction of a Market Fresh Food-to-Go section. As a result, store owner Lesley Peach has increased sales turnover by 20% year-on-year. Woodgate was also commended for its excellent range and its high-quality team, which delivers excellent customer service day-in, day-out.

The winners were celebrated by a 1,600 strong gala dinner crowd, and featured celebrities such as comedian Jason Manford, musician Jimmy Vali and his band, and sports car driver Allan McNish.

The top retailers are selected from the best of Palmer and Harvey’s 63,000 strong customer base of CTNs, independent, convenience and forecourt shops; there were also awards for outstanding suppliers chosen for their ability to offer not just excellent availability and great service levels, but also first-class sales support, business planning, communication and category management.

Martyn Ward, managing director commercial and sales at Palmer and Harvey, praised the high quality of this year’s retailer award winners: “There is constant pressure on retailers to improve. The way in which these outlets have responded to that pressure is hugely impressive – many congratulations to all our winners.”