Location: 

The site is just off a roundabout in a busy part of Slough. It is easy to spot thanks to the BP pole sign and canopy. The pole sign includes the Costcutter logo and Costa Express as well as BP Ultimate. There is also extensive advertising for the BPme rewards scheme across the site.

Forecourt:

Part of the site is cordoned off with cones and tape but I am not sure why.

It was very busy at the time of my visit (a Wednesday lunchtime); so busy (cars queueing to get on the site) that I had to pay for my fuel, move my car then go back in the shop to do a bit of shopping.

Between two of the regular pumps there is an AdBlue4you Smart Retail system where car and van drivers can fill up with AdBlue.

There is some parking but not a lot. However there is a closed- down pub next door so customers could easily park there.

There is quite a lot of rubbish in the bushes on the site.

Shop:

The shop sports a Costcutter fascia and inside the shop there is a lot packed into quite a small space. As you enter the shop there are loads of cut flowers in buckets so many in fact that you can’t get to the greetings cards or snacks behind them.

In the food-to-go chiller there are Ginsters and Co-op sandwiches but no sign of any sort of meal deal.

The soft drinks chiller is well stocked and very well faced up. There are also lots of bigger bottles in there, which is good for those who want to take drinks home and drink them straight away. There is also a lot of chilled wine and beer. There are also stacks of beer across the shop.

There is a Costa Express machine with flapjacks and muffins on display adjacent to it. There are posters highlighting offers on cookies and sausage rolls when you buy them with a hot drink.

The floor on which the Costa Express machine and snacks stand is differentiated from the rest of the floor (wood effect versus tiles) and both floors looked a bit scruffy.

There are quite a lot of Co-op- branded goods across the shop.

The car care range is impressive with most things you’d expect to find in a forecourt store. Above the oil there are instructions (from Castrol) on how to text them your vehicle reg to find out which oil you need for your vehicle.

There is also an Object mobile accessories display.

At the till there is an extensive range of vaping products.

There is a Bake & Bite hot food display near the till with just a few items in it, however they did all look quite appealing.

Above the till there is a hanging sign that displays the car wash menu. There is a choice of three washes costing £3, £5 and £7.

The staff are very friendly and polite. I asked them if there is a customer toilet. I was told ’no’ but then there was a discussion and they agreed to let me use their staff toilet. This is directly off the shop so I wonder why it is not for customer use.

Prognosis:

BP Wexham is one of Highway Stops Retail Ltd’s 11 sites. The company is run by ex-MFG owner Sharad Raja and his son Shilan.

The company says its aim is to offer customers premium fuel brands (currently BP and Gulf) coupled with an ’attractive, competitive and expanding forecourt shop offer’.

Diagnosis:

This is a site that ’does what it says on the tin’. It’s not glitzy or glam in any way but serviceable, which is probably just what those who use it want.

Prescription:

I’d move all those buckets of flowers that are right in the doorway so people can get to other categories such as the snacks behind them.

The introduction of a meal deal would be a good idea, even if it was the most basic type ie sandwich, crisps and drink.

I would also consider opening the staff toilet up to customers, unless there is a very good reason not to do so.