Forecourt Trader
Free fuel promo causes chaos

Police had to stop a forecourt pumping out free fuel to motorists earlier this week after it created traffic chaos.

Jet dealer becomes lifeline to flood-struck Cornwall

A Jet site in Cornwall has kept the county moving when flooding forced cars to use the forecourt as a road.

London set for more electric charging points than forecourts

London is set to become Europe’s electric car capital, with Mayor Boris

Forecourt sales assistant wins top prize at 79

Forecourt sales assistant Elaine Leaney was named as Sales Assistant of the Year at a prestigious awards ceremony in London this week, organised by Forecourt Trader's sister magazine

Autogas lobbies for alternative fuel incentives

LPG fuel provider Autogas is upping its lobbying and stakeholder communications as it strives to persuade the UK government to commit to offering long-term incentives to eco-friendly fuel users.

Mobile Phone Xchange pays out at PayPoint

PayPoint has introduced a new scheme to boost retailers’ incomes by offering a nationwide cash payout option to customers of Mobile Phone Xchange, the UK’s leading mobile phone recycling company, through the PayPoint network.

£700,000 revamp for Barking Service Sation

Independent retailers Ken and Rekha Popat have unveiled their newly-refurbished forecourt on the A13 in Barking, the main route from Essex and the Dartford Crossing into East London.

Aviemore residents campaign for a Tesco forecourt

Inhabitants of Aviemore in the Highlands of Scotland have started a Facebook campaign to get a Tesco forecourt in the town, in a bid to bring down the price of fuel there.

Calling all central and western retailers

RMI Petrol is holding the second of three regional meetings on November 23 following the success of its Forecourt Shows and sell-out Inverness event this year.

Gulf retailer turns to TV Dad for design advice

Independent retailer Oliver Plaskitt looked to famous Dad Peter for the renovation of his Gulf-branded North Road Garage in Shipton-by-Beningbrough.

Duty crackdown could close alcohol retailers

Independent retailers who buy cheap alcoholic products from illegitimate wholesalers are putting their business at risk as HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC ) adds new powers and extra resources to its fight against duty fraud.

Fairbanks gives wetstock training to petroleum regulators

Wetstock management specialists Fairbanks has hosted an open day for 60 Petroleum Officers, Trading Standards Officers and Fire Authority personnel at its offices in Lancashire.

Forecourt Watch rolls out to Aberdeen

Grampian Police has joined forces with the British Oil Security Syndicate (BOSS) and independent retailers to introduce Forecourt Watch in Aberdeen in a bid to reduce drive-offs in the area.

ExxonMobil wins license to sell Dexos in UK

ExxonMobil is now licensed to provide Dexos2 products in the UK and Ireland, making it the first major oil supplier to secure the official Dexos licensing.

Continuing a long association with General Motors’ dealers across the UK, ExxonMobil now has two products – Mobil 1 Formula ESP 0W-40 and Mobil Super 3000 Formula G 5W-30 – which are Dexos2 licensed and fully approved to meet the specific requirements of petrol and diesel engines in GM vehicles, including Vauxhall and Chevrolet.

Euro Garages boss in line for business award

Top 50 Indie boss Mohsin Issa, director of Euro Garages, has been shortlisted for Entrepreneur of the Year in the Growing Business Awards 2010.
This particular award is sponsored by Coutts and judges are looking for

ACS warns of 'perfect storm' threat to high streets

A perfect storm of aggressive supermarket expansion, poor planning laws and low investment could wipe out hundreds of British high streets, according to James Lowman, chief executive of the Association of Convenience Stores.

Winter chill

There's a definite chill in the air and I don't just mean the weather. Up and down the land there's a distinct lack of warmth as people moan about their prospects (see News Extra page 10). The Spending Review has covered the nation's spirits like a thick frost. The talk is of tax, tax and more tax, whether it's VAT, fuel duty, national insurance take your pick. The cost of living is rising, pay packets aren't unless you're a city banker that is. Anxiety over job security in both the public and private sectors is forcing people to put a freeze on spending. Even house prices which not long ago provided both reassurance as well as a financial resource as they rose to unrealistic levels are on a slippery slope.

Rural fuel duty pilot is 'complete cop out'

RMI Petrol's chairman Brian Madderson has branded the government's announcement on a rural fuel duty rebate pilot a "complete cop out and a complete sham".

Gohil for gold

It was Bhupa and Lata Gohil's honeymoon road trip in America in the '80s that sparked an ambition to run a leading-edge forecourt like those they encountered on their journey. Little did they know then that they would fulfil their goal and in 2010 become Forecourt Trader of the Year.

Crime under cover

Whatever retailers do to protect their businesses against crime, thieves always seem to be one step ahead with different tactics to beat them, and this summer saw a new crime come to the fore fuel thefts direct from storage tanks.

Power lines

Up to 40% of annual battery sales are made in the lead up to Christmas. For maximum sales, Tim Clark, sales manager UK and Ireland for Panasonic Energy, recommends that forecourt retailers prompt their customers to see if they need any extra batteries.

Rolling on

Roll-your-own (RYO) tobacco sales topped £1bn in the 12 months ending July 2010, according to AC Nielsen's Market Track report, which is an increase of over 19% compared to the previous year.

Jet secures seven more forecourts

Jet has signed up seven more dealers this autumn, bringing its total number of additional signings this year to more than 50.

Car Wash Association sets target on hand car washers

The Car Wash Association (CWA) is urging officials to act to improve car washing standards with the launch of a national campaign to raise awareness of the major problems affecting the industry.

88% drive-off debt recovery

Fuel retailers represented by BOSS, the British Oil Security Syndicate, are recovering 88% of money owed to them for fuel following 'no means to pay incidents' at service stations, since partnering with leading debt collection agency Daniels Silverman.

Gulf launches premium fuel

Gulf has announced the launch of Endurance, its new premium grade fuel brand, which is now available to all dealers nationwide. The company claims the new product offers Gulf retailers an additional revenue stream while reflecting Gulf's long-term association with motorsport and, in particular, classic world endurance events such as the 24 hours of Le Mans.

Lack of bank lending hits forecourt sales

One of the key factors within the forecourt property sector in 2010 has been the continued lack of available bank funding, according to Calum Campbell, partner Petroleum & Roadside Services at chartered surveyor Graham & Sibbald.

Xmo Strata now focusing on dealer groups

Forecourt sign installation and maintenance contractor Xmo Strata has confirmed its recent restructuring was prompted by a decision to focus on dealer groups. Following an announcement in June that it was beefing up senior management, staff were instructed to work more closely with dealers.

Brobot's Bunny is a great success

Top 50 Indie Brobot Petroleum has relaunched the first of its stores to undergo a full redevelopment since partnering with Londis last June. The newly-developed site in Bunny, Nottinghamshire, is one of 22 in the Midlands owned by Brobot, all supplied by Londis.

Media screen first for UK

A new Budgens forecourt has opened in Yeovil this week and will be the first in the UK to offer a media screen system at its petrol pumps.

in brief


Results of this month's online poll:

Are you concerned that half of the refineries in the UK are now up for sale?

Fuel prices - October 27, 2010
Cut to the quick

With colossal job losses in the public sector and cuts in public spending, the government's Spending Review announced by Chancellor George Osborne last month has sent shockwaves through the nation and forecourt operators are unlikely to ride the storm without a struggle.

In the surgery this month – Townstal Road Garage, Dartmouth, Devon

GENERAL APPEARANCE: Around a mile from Dartmouth town centre is the Townstal Road Garage. Part of the privately-owned Holliss Filling Stations group, it offers BP fuel and has a Spar shop.

Pay on display

The EKW PAYEPeople Annual Forecourt Wages Report 2010

Help and advice from jac roper

Vouching for new scheme?

American beauties

A contingent of UK fuel and convenience retailers and suppliers visited Atlanta, Georgia, last month and came back with a new word 'petropreneurs'.

Washtec's touchless car wash hits small screen

Washtec's AquaJet Touchless car wash hit the small screen last month when Yorkshire-based retailer Innerspace Stations officially launched the machine at its Hull Road forecourt.

Surprising hazards

New research by sign contractor XMO Strata has revealed the real source of forecourt hazards, previously thought to be caused by members of the public by things like erratic driving.

Moto adopts HTEC

Moto Hospitality's Poplar 2000 truck stop in Cheshire, the largest in the UK, has adopted a new automated fuelling system from HTEC.

Gilbarco unveils app

Integrated fuel control supplier Gilbarco Veeder-Root has launched a mobile phone app to help the industry access information quickly.

RPM & DP join forces

DP Fuel Tank Services (DP FTS) and Repair Protection and Maintenance (RPM) have signed a mutual agreement to market each other's services.

Britvic and PepsiCo UK reward thirsty consumers

Britvic and PepsiCo UK are running their first ever cross-brand promotion. The Reward Your Thirst campaign has prizes to be won every minute, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The brands included are all Tango, 7Up and Pepsi variants as well as Drench, Juicy Drench and Mountain Dew. And the promotion is running on all 440ml, 500ml and 600ml PET formats.

Eggs with extras

New eggs from Cadbury for Easter 2011 include small Freddo and Curly Wurly ones, which both contain a countline bar but the Freddo also includes a beanie while the Curly Wurly has a snake toy. Both have rrps of £3.49.

Raiders get relaunch

UBUK is relaunching Space Raiders at an 'Only 20p' price point.

Price-marked duo

Both Lambert & Butler and Golden Virginia are available in new price-marked packs. The Lambert & Butler King Size packs are price-marked at £5.85 for 20 and £2.99 for 10. The Golden Virginia green packs are price-marked at £3.32 for 12.5g, £6.47 for 25g and £12.78 for the 50g.

Zero backed by hero

The launch of Powerade Zero, described as the "first ever zero sugar, calorie-free fitness drink" is backed by a campaign featuring World Heptathlon champion Jessica Ennis.

Late night launch

Two new 'late night' flavours have been added to the Doritos range: tantalising tikka and BBQ rib. Rrp is £1.49. Their launch ties in with a new late-night promotion. New packs feature an interactive design which 'comes to life' in front of a web cam, allowing consumers to access an exclusive Rhianna track and video which they can control and view in 'day' and 'night' settings. In addition, an exclusive Professor Green track and video is available online ( The promotion will be backed by digital media and PR activity,

M&M's spring look

Mars is launching limited-edition 'spring coloured' M&M's for 2011. Special sharing bags feature M&M's characters dressed as bunnies and contain pink, yellow, turquoise and green sweets. According to IRI figures, M&M's is a £50m brand.