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Retailer profiles

Taking a look through some of the best independent retailers shops around the country

Midway

Lifestyle Express Midway – ‘We don’t just supply products, we supply ideas as well’

Location: Fromes Hill, Herefordshire Hours: 7am-9pm Staff: 6 Size: 1,200sq ft Trading since: 2016 A lifetime's experience running a butcher’s shop still left Helen and Peter Rogers with a steep learning curve ahead of them when they opened Midway...
Corfe Castle village store

Corfe Castle village store: Carole and Terry Birnie create a destination

Where Mary Portas failed to restore the fortunes of Corfe Castle village’s local store, Terry and Carole Birnie have succeeded. They told Joe Cooper how knowing their customers, meeting their needs and becoming a...
Raj Bhatia - Battersea General Store

Raj Bhatia is powering up a quality store in Battersea

Using his 16 years of retail experience, Raj Bhatia has opened a premium quality independent store in the heart of London’s Battersea Power Station development and is aiming for it to be the best...
Spar

‘If we’d just been a corner shop we would’ve folded’

Location: Kendal, Cumbria Hours: 6am-10pm every day Staff: 17 staff (two full-time) Size: 1,000sq ft Trading since: 1983 When floods in 2015 put Spar Sandylands nearly five feet underwater it forced the store to modernise with its first major...
Ian Handley

Ian Handley knows he can’t rest on his laurels, particularly during these tough times

Maintaining the loyalty of his customers has been paramount to Ian Handley’s success. However, with new financial challenges, it hasn’t been easy in recent times. Joe Cooper hears about the hard work he’s been...
Mehmet Guzel

Simply Fresh retailer Mehmet Guzel is focused on food to go in his third...

How do you meet the demands of affluent rail commuters and a local residents’ association? Create a store focused on quality food to go and fast and effective service, says Mehmet Guzel, who opened...
Raw Store

Raw Store: ‘We’ve increased our fruit and veg take five fold’

Location: Old Street, London Hours: 7am-12am Sun-Wed, 7am-3am Thu, 7am-4am Fri-Sat Staff: 10 Size: 2,000 sq ft Trading since: May 2017 The name above the door is just the beginning of the brand for owner Pav Sahota, who has...
Robert Kirkwood

How Robert Kirkwood went from novice to expert

Robert Kirkwood was a retail novice less than 18 months ago, but now boasts an average basket spend of £7.02 in a store that is as new to the convenience game as he is. "I  love...
Kay Patel

Why margin is king for Kay Patel

Owning and running five stores, Kay Patel lives and breathes retail. In tough times this passion pays off, he tells Tom Gockelen-Kozlowski. "Retailers tend to focus on similar things: availability, price, pack size – at...
Long Ashton

Long Ashton Post Office: ‘Our fight to get shoppers back after ATM explosion’

Location: Long Ashton, Bristol Hours: 7am-11pm Mon-Sat, 8am-10pm Sun Staff: Four Size: 380sq ft Trading since: 2008 David Andrews received a phone call from a staff member opening up the store. “It’s gone” she said. “What do you mean it’s...