A year in the life – retailer Gary Pilsworth’s monthly column

It’s that time of year – it’s been really quiet, to be honest. But, from speaking to people at cash and carry, which is quiet itself, it’s quiet for everybody. I think the weather has made a big difference, you can tell when there’s a break in the weather, people come in. Once we’ve weathered the time of year – and the weather – it will be back to normal.

I’m really beginning to notice sales of cigarettes and tobacco aren’t doing as well. I’m sure the price is beginning to have a big part to play in people’s habits.

I’m beginning to sell a lot more in bulk to customers too, packs of kitchen rolls and toilet rolls. It’s the same with pet foods.

I’ve secured another egg supplier – it’s a farm local to me, a mile from where I live. They’re really nice eggs and they’re a good talking point. I’ve put them with my other ones and they’re selling quicker, which is a good sign.

My beer sales have gone drastically down in the New Year, but my wine sales have gone up – it’s really strange. I’m really trying to buy a good selection of wines, from cheap and cheerful ones up to £10, £11 or £12 a bottle.

My only real problem is still with newspapers. As I said to a customer this morning, as far as the Telegraph is concerned, I’ve just about had enough. I have 14 Telegraphs go out to vouchers and pre-booked, I got just 15 in today. The one I put out was badly crumpled too, it was embarrassing. It had gone by 10 to 7. It’s very awkward for me and it’s having a detrimental effect on my business. One customer phoned the Telegraph – they told them to change their newsagent.


This article doesn't have any comments yet, be the first!

Become a member to have your say