Valerie Dowling of Mace Approach, a BP service station in Andover, Hampshire, is the winner of the Forecourt Category of the Sales Assistant of the Year Awards 2009, run by Forecourt Trader’s sister publication Convenience Store.

She was presented with the award by celebrity Anthea Turner at a celebration lunch at the Dorchester Hotel in Park Lane.

Val has worked for Mace Approach for six years and the judges described her as a very skilled supervisor who can stand in for the manager when needed and iws on 24-hour call to dash to the site in an emergency. She will go out of the way to help a regular disabled customer who can’t leave his car, but also has the steel to refuse a sale of cigarettes because she believed they were going to be passed on to a child.