Mogas has certainly hit the nail on the head this month (see page 58) - as he does, let’s face it most months - with his comments about everything happening at once. After all we’ve had ridiculously fast-rising fuel prices, falling demand, supplier price increases, tanker driver strikes, forecourts running dry, growing numbers of drive-offs and even a new kind of theft - ’hooded bilkers with jerry cans’. There’s also the headache about biofuels and bugs; and the erosion of car wash business being valiantly tackled by the Car Wash Association. And that’s just the forecourt side of the business.

In the shop there are major concerns about forthcoming legislation that could cast some rather dark clouds over business prospects. The recent Forecourt Seminar run by the Association of Convenience Stores suggested the potential for all sorts of gloom for both the tobacco and alcohol categories. And all this is happening against a background of economic uncertainty with plummeting house prices, troubled banks reining in their previously over-generous credit services, and a seemingly charmless - certainly uninspirational - prime minister to blather on about it all. Our Database column (see page 16) offers some very sound advice about keeping calm and maintaining basic business controls - easier said than done! But clearly, judging by the first round of the Forecourt Trader awards - many of you are doing just that. And, as the column concludes, might even be enjoying it!