Forecourt Trader
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Shop Doctor: In the surgery this month - White's Calver, Flint House Garage, Calver Sough, Hope Valley, Derbyshire

LOCATION: My target is a family owned business, in the heart of the Derbyshire Peak District, on the A623 at the village of Calver.

Shop Doctor: In the surgery this month - Park & Shop Romsey, Winchester Road, Romsey, Hampshire

LOCATION: Very close to the busy centre of the small market town of Romsey is a BP Park & Shop service station. In such a central position it is very accessible and visible thanks to its large branded canopy and pole with prices.

Shop Doctor: In the surgery this month - Broadway Garage, Broadstairs, Kent

LOCATION: Just outside Broadstairs on the A255 are two large retail parks both part of the Westwood Gateway complex including major superstores offering fuel at highly competitive prices. They provide fierce competition for my target site the Broadway Garage trading as Morrison's Budgens of Broadstairs.

Shop Doctor: In the surgery this month Bellingers Service Station, Grove, Wantage, Oxfordshire

LOCATION:

A business with a service station, shop, franchise to sell new and used Vauxhall and Chevrolet cars and a micro-brewery must be worth a visit! Bellingers has two sites one in Abingdon and my target at Grove. It is on the A338 just outside Wantage and is clearly visible the distinctive Jet service station and Vauxhall car display make it hard to miss.

Shop Doctor: In the surgery this month - Ings Service Station, Staveley, Cumbria

LOCATION:

Just outside Windermere, on the A591, is the small village of Ings and my target its service station. The forecourt and shop are co-located and part of a large area that also includes a significant parking area, a restaurant/motel (now closed and boarded up) and one of The Lakeland Motorhome Centres. The entrance to the motorhome showroom is right next to the forecourt shop.



Shop Doctor: In the surgery this month - Brian Llewelyn, a'i Ferched, Penfro, Eglwyswrw, Crymych, Pembrokeshire

LOCATION:

My target is in the beautiful holiday area of North Pembrokeshire. It's located on the B4329, just outside the small village of Eglwyswrw.

Shop Doctor: In the surgery this month - Applegreen, Petrogas, High St, Uckfield, East Sussex

LOCATION:

At the southern end of Uckfield is a Petrogas Applegreen site. This was the first Applegreen to introduce a Subway store and a new store design. I was interested to see it now, after about a year of trading.

Shop Doctor: In the surgery this month - Fraser Budgens, Marlborough, Wilts

LOCATION:

My target is the prize-winning Fraser Budgens site at Marlborough. It's located on the Marlborough Business Park, just a mile from the town centre, opposite a large Tesco (no fuel).

Shop Doctor: In the surgery this month - Essentials Meon Hut, West Meon, Petersfield, Hants

LOCATION: Last year, following a few weeks closure for a new-build, this site re-opened as Essentials of West Meon a Nisa/BP Service Station

Shop Doctor: In the surgery this month MRH Oxshott, High Street, Oxshott, Surrey

LOCATION:

The village of Oxshott is located between Esher and Leatherhead. Close to the main Chelsea FC training ground, it has been described as the "most expensive village with the most footballers in England". My reason for this visit is MRH Retail's new convenience store, Hursts.

Shop Doctor: In the surgery this month - Brobot Corby Southern Gateway, Corby, Northants

GENERAL APPEARANCE:

On the north west outskirts of Corby, at a roundabout, is the new Southern Gateway Business Park. Currently it only has three completed developments - a Premier Inn, a Beefeater restaurant and my target, the award-winning Brobot site.

Shop Doctor: In the surgery this month - B&M Harland, Malton Rd, Pickering, North Yorkshire

GENERAL APPEARANCE:

Pickering, just south of the North Yorkshire moors, is probably equidistant between Whitby, York, Thirsk and Scarborough. My target is the B&M Harland service station, because it is the first to sell Spar-branded fuels.

Shop Doctor: In the surgery this month - GH Lunn & Sons, Simply Fresh Weare, Axbridge, Somerset

GENERAL APPEARANCE:

I have read a lot of positive reports about Simply Fresh the fast-growing symbol group that places great emphasis on community-based, family-owned businesses that are encouraged to support local suppliers. The rustic style of branding promotes the concept of fresh foods and has an intriguing tag line 'convenience just got better...'. All this encouraged me to visit the first forecourt to sign-up to the group the Lunn site on the A38, a busy main road between Bristol Airport and the M5.

Shop Doctor: In the surgery this month - Wellington Service Station, Archway Rd, London N6

GENERAL APPEARANCE:

The Esso Snack & Shop Wellington Service Station is virtually located on an 'island'! An island made up of the Archway Road (A1) and North Hill that joins Aylmer Road and leads onto the North Circular with its access to the M1. Traffic is constant, at times horrific, and there is very little access for pedestrians. I was interested to see how the 24/7 Wellington Service Station managed its shop offering to what must mainly be vehicle-based customers.

Shop Doctor: In the surgery this month - Milton Road Service Station, Southsea

GENERAL APPEARANCE: I felt it high time I visited a Shop'N Drive site so 'stuck a pin' in the Rontec website Petrol Station Finder and came up with Milton Road, Southsea.

Shop Doctor: In the surgery this month: Applegreen Fairies Cross, Oakpark Road, Tralee, Co Kerry

GENERAL APPEARANCE: Applegreen Fairies Cross is located in the Republic of Ireland on the outskirts of Tralee, the county town of County Kerry. It is a corner site with a lot of passing traffic and is near the Kerry Technology Park and the Tralee Pitch & Putt Club.

Shop Doctor: Freshwater Garages, Isle of Wight

GENERAL APPEARANCE: Freshwater Garages is in Freshwater town centre, on the Isle of Wight. It is on a corner, is very visible and is opposite a large Southern Co-op.

Shop Doctor: Shell Halfmoon, Epping, Essex

GENERAL APPEARANCE:

I was happy to pull into the Shell Halfmoon service station as its advertised pole prices were competitive. I also needed a snack for lunch and was interested to again sample some of the Shell 'Deli2go' range.

Shop Doctor: In the surgery this month - Joblings Garage, Bicester, Oxon

GENERAL APPEARANCE:

A Forecourt Trader reader suggested a visit to a site with friendly staff, Joblings Garage in Bicester. It is a BP/Mace site, right next door to the Joblings

Shop Doctor: BP Wisbech Road Service Station, Littleport, Cambridgeshire

p13_s_doc_april_13.jpgGENERAL APPEARANCE: This site, developed by the James Graven group, is perhaps better known as Spar Littleport and for winning best environmentally friendly outlet awards. In October 2012 the enterprise was leased to BP.

Shop Doctor: Morrisons Petrol Station, West Bay Rd, Bridport, Dorset

Morrisons Petrol Station Feb 2013GENERAL APPEARANCE: Just south of Bridport, on the B3157, is a Morrisons. But my stealth check target was the supermarket's petrol station and shop.

Shop Doctor: Budgens of Wells, Somerset

GENERAL APPEARANCE: Not far from the cathedral is the Forecourt Trader of the Year 2012 prize-winning enterprise, Budgens of Wells. Opened in July 2011, the BP forecourt and Budgens store is located in the heart of a dense housing area.

Shop Doctor: Ward End Service Station, Birmingham

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.

Shop Doctor: BP/Mace Thatcham, Woolhampton, Nr Thatcham, Berkshire

GENERAL APPEARANCE: On the A4, almost midway between Newbury and Reading, is a BP Mace service station. It shares a spacious site with WCE self-drive vehicle hire and MERC servicing and repairs.

Shop Doctor: Rampton Service Station, Rampton, Nottinghamshire

GENERAL APPEARANCE: Roughly in the centre of a triangle comprising Lincoln, Gainsborough and Retford, is the village of Rampton and R&R Motors and Linda's Convenience Store, which is also known as Rampton Service Station.

Shop Doctor: City Service Station, Commercial Road, Hereford

GENERAL APPEARANCE: In Hereford, the A4103 from Worcester leads into the busy Commercial Road. City Service Station looks like a recent conversion to a smart Harvest Energy site.

Shop Doctor: Tinkerbell Service Station, Barford St Martin, Wiltshire

GENERAL APPEARANCE: The BP/Spar Tinkerbell Service Station is just outside the village of Barford St Martin on the A30, almost at the mid-point between Salisbury and Shaftesbury.

Shop Doctor: Winchester Murco Service Station

Shop Doctor: Esso/On the Run Service Station, Chiswick Flyover, Chiswick, London

Shop Doctor: Maiden Newton Service Station, Dorchester Road, Dorset

GENERAL APPEARANCE:

Maiden Newton is on the A356 (Crewkerne to Dorchester) road, some nine miles from Dorchester. It is a small village with a convenience store, post office and newsagents. My target was the Texaco service station with its Spar shop.

Shop Doctor: Total/Bonjour, A27 Eastbound, Emsworth, Hampshire

GENERAL APPEARANCE: The Total/Bonjour is the only service station directly on the busy east-bound A27 between Southampton and Chichester. It shares a site with a Little Chef and Travelodge.

Shop Doctor: Deeside Service Station, Deeside Industrial Park

GENERAL APPEARANCE: Two miles from the end of the M56, on the A548 towards north Wales and at the entrance to Zone 2 of the Deeside Industrial Park, stands the large Euro Garages site (around 2.5 acres) with its 24-hour BP, Starbucks drive-thru coffee shop, Spar store and Burger King.