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January

ACS calls for clarity over draft Bill
09 January, 2013

The Association of Convenience Stores has submitted evidence to the Home Affairs Select Committee inquiry on the Government’s draft Anti-Social Behaviour Bill.

HMRC threatens action on VAT returns
09 January, 2013

As many as 50,000 businesses that have failed to submit VAT returns will be targeted by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) this month with warnings that their tax affairs will be closely scrutinised.

New car sales up
09 January, 2013

New car sales were up 5.3% in 2012, compared with the previous year, reaching a total of 2,044,609, according to new car registration figures released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).

Total re-jigs UK refinery business
09 January, 2013

Changes are being made to the structure of the business behind Lindsey Oil Refinery following Total’s worldwide reorganisation of its downstream business in 2012 into two new divisions: Refining & Chemicals and Marketing & Services.

Merril Boulton: New year, new planet
14 January, 2013

Happy New Year to you I hope it all went well for you and your businesses. Many of you enjoyed reasonable trading over the Christmas period by the sounds of it (see News Extra on page 10), and seem pretty optimistic about your prospects for 2013. That's the spirit no one ever got very far with negative thinking. There are things to be encouraged about, such as the increase in footfall as people fill their cars little and often. They are also more likely to be doing a top-up shop than travelling to a supermarket for a giant trawl round the store with a trolley. That means they will be making more journeys into your forecourt stores to be tempted by all your products and services as long as they are tempting. If not, there's plenty of other places they can go as all grocers focus on the c-store sector.

Footfall offers hope
14 January, 2013

The forecourt sector is facing a tough start to 2013, as it will be affected by the wider economy, but there will be trends and opportunities that could be turned to operators benefit. That's the view of the industry at the start of the New Year.

Shop Doctor: Ward End Service Station, Birmingham
14 January, 2013

GENERAL APPEARANCE: Ward End Service Station is the unit where Booker recently introduced its new Premier Food & Fuel concept. The bespoke offer is now being rolled out. The trial received good publicity and I was keen to make a 'stealth check' on the test store.

Money Talk: Pantomime season is extended to September
14 January, 2013

At almost the last minute, the government cancelled this month's intended rise in fuel duty. The pressure groups and special interest lobbies claimed a victory; George Osborne looks like a politician who's listening to 'the people'; the petrol retail industry avoids another rise in costs; and consumers avoid another hammering that they could barely afford. Everyone's a winner. It was the right result, so why does it still feel like a ridiculous way to deal with something as important as the price of a basic commodity that is essential to a 21st century economy? Perhaps it's because we've now seen this pantomime several times a year recently and, according to the official timetable, we're due for yet another performance in the run-up to the next scheduled duty rise on September 1.

Service Centre: Jac Roper on the New Year starting with problems with diesel tanks and cash machines
14 January, 2013

A second quote saves the day

Happy New Year to all. Right, that's enough joy; now back to the problems. Garry Gibson, head of operations at Cooper Bros in Wishaw, Lancashire, certainly had a time of it last year.

Gulf stream
14 January, 2013

It's been more than a year since Ramsay MacDonald took charge of the GB Oils fuel retailing business as retail director. His first duty was to bring a sense of order to the retail network in the aftermath of acquiring the Total and Pace dealer operations. His next and continuing duty was to develop the Gulf brand in the UK.

Amid all the political turmoil, do you feel as prepared as you can be for EU exit on October 31, deal or no deal?