North-Yorkshire based petrol station owner John Stevenson has opened his third Nisa Local forecourt store.

The 2,600sq ft store opened last week less than six months since building work commenced.

The site, in Northallerton, sits on the fringes of the bustling market town and is already proving very popular with the local community.

The independent, family-run enterprise with is highlighting its independent status with the story of the Stevenson family’s forecourt business told through a series of artistic story boards placed around the shop

They declare their family business status since 1978 when John’s father Ian was in charge of the first forecourt up the road in Marton near Middlesbrough.

John said: “For me it was really important to let our customers know that we are an independent forecourt, run as a family business. Within walking distance of the store we have almost every supermarket there is as well as the discounters and Marks and Spencer. I knew we were going to have to work hard here but we offer something a bit different through our independence.”

The store design is something John wanted to ensure made them stand out from the competition, insisting he didn’t want his fixtures and fittings to look like every other store.

“I got a lot of inspiration from stores in Ireland and also some of the concepts in Nisa’s Store of the Future Evolution shop that was exhibited at Stoneleigh. But throughout the whole development I said I just didn’t want it to be ‘samey’, I wanted it to look a bit different to other stores.”

He is confident he has achieved that look, from the halo lighting along the front of the store, to the bespoke LCD lighting suspended over the licensed area, to the variation of floor coverings that differentiate areas of the store and not forgetting the personalised story boards.

A modern unit within the drinks section boasts a wide range of craft gins and behind the counter, spirits are marked up with paper price tags beneath a sign to shoppers that states: “thanks for keeping it local”.

After just a week of trading John reports: “Fuel sales are absolutely bouncing.

“We’re way ahead of what we projected and sales in the shop are also going well. The great weather has really helped but I’m pretty confident that once we get our Food to Go fully operational, with the arrival of Subway, we will see sales increase further.”