Forecourt Trader
Food for thought

The Fraser Group had always found it hard to make a success of the food-to-go sector. Owners Robert and Hugh Fraser knew how important the category could be to a forecourt but somehow could not seem to make it work well enough for them until recently. The retailers, who have five BP sites, decided that in order to develop the business at their Carterton site in Oxfordshire, they needed to upgrade the Spar store and offer a point of difference. They carried out some research and one thing became clear: there was potential to develop and capitalise on the existing food-to-go offer.

LCC Group opens second 24hr pay@pump site using HTEC technology

GO, part of the Cookstown based energy company  the LCC Group, is set to open

New to the UK - Aquarama Stargate S5 arrives in Thaxted

Motorists in Thaxted were celebrating this week following the arrival of a new, state-of-the-art car wash at the town’s

Asda cuts could trigger fuel price war

A fuel price war could be in the offing following Asda's announcement this week that it was cutting the price of both unleaded and diesel by up to 1ppl and 2ppl respectively.

Switch to Spar boosts sales for MRH

MRH (GB)'s Nettlebed site has seen a 75% increase in shop sales since it underwent a major development and switched to Spar last year.

RMI Petrol calls on PM to come up with fuel stabilizer plan

RMI Petrol has written to the Prime Minister urging him to set up a working party to produce a comprehensive plan for a fuel stabilizer. The stabilizer was proposed in the Conservatives' pre-election manifesto and

New "green" M5 site gets thumbs up

Westmorland Ltd has been granted planning permission for a new "eco-friendly" motorway service station

Pace adds 15 new sites after brand refresh

Pace Fuelcare has announced that it has added 15 new independent sites to its network since it refreshed its brand and

Diesel cars sales overtake petrol for first time

Sales of diesel cars have overtaken those of petrol cars for the first time as motorists opt for more fuel-effecient

Pump prices set to soar again

RMI Petrol has warned that fuel prices are likely to rise by up to 8% by the start of 2011. Motorists are also expected to see a hike of 3% at the

New traffic after Gulf switch

Lancashire retailers Paul and Elaine Wellings have seen new traffic at their site since switching their fuel brand to

Number of Business Rates appeals tops 2,000

More than 2,000 fuel retailers have already lodged appeals against the 2010

BP announces 'significant milestone' in plugging oil leak

BP announced today that it had reached a 'significant milestone' in its efforts to

Tanker drivers strike threat

Retailers have been warned that fuel tanker drivers could strike later this year unless job losses, pay cuts and

ACS welcomes new ombudsman

The ACS has welcomed the Government's decision to introduce a Grocery Code Adjudicator (GCA) to

Retailers urged to respond to Licensing Act proposals

The Association of Convenience Stores (ACS) has warned fuel retailers that proposals to overhaul the Licensing Act

AA backs RMI Petrol fight to scrap Dartford Crossing toll

The AA has added its support to RMI Petrol's new campaign to scrap the tolling system on the Dartford Crossing.

Murco UK network put up for sale

Murphy Oil has confirmed plans to put its UK network of sites up for sale as well as its Milford Haven

Rural site gains grant for pay@pump

A remote community-run petrol station in the West Highlands of Scotland is now offering petrol 24 hours a day,

Hard work paying off

Some good news could be on the horizon it seems for our valiant Car Wash Association chairman David Charman, and the few trusty souls that have continued to support the car wash cause, particularly through some rather dark and lonely days.

Minister urged to act over ratings issue

RMI Petrol has seen progress in its fight against Business Rates valuations for sites by holding its first face-to-face

Tank robbers

There are two good reasons why forecourt operators need to take their wet-stock management seriously safety and the environment; and because it makes good business sense. So says Tokheim marketing manager, David MacHale.

Xmas time

For those of you thinking about giving up on Christmas confectionery and handing it over completely to the grocery mults, the advice from the experts is 'think again'. Jonathan Summerley, purchasing director at specialist confectionery cash and carry chain Hancocks, comments: "Competition will always come from the supermarkets for every seasonal event that surely demonstrates the existence of the opportunity if you choose to look positively at the situation."

Shell launches new 'breakthrough' fuels

Shell has teamed up with Andrew 'Freddie' Flintoff to launch Shell FuelSave unleaded and diesel described

Calls for all road tolls to be scrapped

RMI Petrol has called on the government to cut road traffic congestion by scrapping all toll charges.

Who will be named Retailer Champion? You decide...

Our Forecourt Trader and P&H Retailer Champion award is back for 2010 by popular demand. Launched last year as

Hand car washes take 45% of market sales

Drivers spent £523m on car washes last year, according to a new report from Datamonitor. The research company

Motor Fuel Group chooses Mace for growth

Top 50 indie Motor Fuel Group has converted two former BP M&S sites to

Kay Group goes large in Clitheroe

Kay Group, the South Yorkshire-based

MPK leases latest site

Top 50 Indies retailer MPK Garages has leased a site in Cheadle, Staffordshire.

in brief


Results of this month's online poll:

How do you feel about the effect the measures taken in the Emergency Budget will have on your business - particularly the rise in VAT to 20% in January 2011?

Fuel Prices - July 21, 2010
Retailers right on track

Forecourts will evolve into a "showcase of brands", retailers at last month's Top Indies Track Day were told. Speaking at

In the surgery this month - Glasbury Service Station, Glasbury-on-Wye, Herefordshire

GENERAL APPEARANCE: Glasbury Service Station is situated where the busy B4350 to Hay-on-Wye, the A470 to Brecon and the A238 to Hereford all converge. The site is signposted by a pole and a red Regent-branded canopy.

Snakes and ladders


Help and advice from jac roper


Service with a smile

Stefan Wulkan has been working with ConocoPhillips for a little over 20 years and is now on his third period working in the UK this time as manager, UK & Ireland marketing. He took up the role last autumn and says he is thrilled to be back, although he recognises how things have changed since he was last here in the early part of the century.

Murco makes a difference

Of all the deals put forward, the price-supported margin deal offered by Murco was by far the better package. That was the verdict of the Stuart family when they were looking for a new fuel supplier at their Dumbarton Service Station earlier this year.

WashTec's EasyWash: an entry-level solution

WashTec has recently launched EasyWash, designed to offer an ideal entry-level solution for forecourts that offer a car wash service.

Stylish choc machine

Valera has brought out a stylish new hot chocolate dispenser called the Delice 3.

Torex works for MRH

Top 50 Indie retailer MRH (GB) has finished installing Torex's Iridium POS and Prism SQL for back office across 220 of its sites.

Gulf's pump service

Gulf has signed a deal with pump and wet-stock management services company Fairbanks to ensure its retailers receive a full forecourt meter audit and can get any over-dispensing pumps reset at the same time.

Verco rolls out Midi

Following the recent launch of its new-generation open-chill Cambridge range, Verco has added three Midi versions. They are 1.5m high and have been designed to match the height of gondola units to help improve visibility in forecourt stores.

New flavour boosts for Tropicana and Copella

Pepsico has enhanced its juice brands Tropicana and Copella with new flavour additions, to help drive growth and profits for retailers. The Tropicana range has been expanded with a new citrus blend orange & lemon, available in a 1ltr format, rrp £1.99. Following the success of the recently launched orange & lime variant (it delivered 60% incremental sales to the category, and became Tropicana's fifth best seller, according to Nielsen data), Pepsico is expecting similar success with orange & lemon. Meanwhile another top-seller, ruby breakfast, is being launched in a 1.5ltr format.

Christmas from Nestlé

Nestlé is launching its first fairtrade seasonal impulse line. The Kit Kat Claus bar features embossed fairtrade chocolate and a seasonal Santa design. Recommended retail price (rrp) is 45p. The bar will benefit from marketing support, focusing on the fairtrade aspect. Meanwhile, for 2010 the Quality Street My Caramel Swirl, My Green Triangle and My Purple One sweets will come in a new dual-opening outer, which offers a better display solution for retailers. New gift offerings include Rowntree's Pick & Mix and Rowntree's Fruit Pastilles in heritage gift cartons as well as the Aero Bubbles peppermint gift box. There is also a new Milkybar Polar Bear a Christmas version of the Milkybar Bluebell cow which is available at Easter. Rrp is £2.

Alien joins Starmix

Haribo's Starmix is celebrating its 15th birthday with the addition of a 'very cherry alien' sweet in bags. The new sweet was decided upon via a public vote. Consumers could choose from very cherry alien, totally tropical alien or citrus blast rocket.

The slice is right

Border Homebake has launched a range of individually-packed slices for convenience retailers, with recommended retail prices from 99p to £1.79.

Myleene's an expert

Ex-Hearsay member and 'I'm a Celebrity...' contestant Myleene Klass has been named as the new face of Birds Eye. Her official role is 'active lifestyle expert' for the Birds Eye 100% Challenge.

News from Mini Moos

Fox's Biscuits is extending its Mini Moos range with the launch of a choc chip variety.