Who we visited

Co-OP Market Street, Ashby De-La-Zouch, Leicestershire

CostCutter Lodway, Pill, Bristol

Keystore Lammermoor Road, Kirkintilloch, Glasgow

MACE St Leonards Road, Horsham, West Sussex

tesco express Denmark Villas, Hove, Sussex

How they performed

Once again, none of the top-up stores in our survey were able to provide a full basket for mystery shoppers. The 4-pack of 440ml Stella Artois was not available at the Mace store in Horsham, West Sussex. The Keystore on Lammermoor Road in Glasgow did stock the Stella Artois beer, but in a 500ml size instead.

The 250g pack of Tetley's tea bags and the 4-pint bottle of semi-skimmed milk were also unavailable at two stores we visited.

It was a decent week in terms of customer service, even though availability was not impressive. Our shopper at the Co-op on Market Street, in Ashby De-La-Zouch, Leicestershire, noted that the store was generally low in stock on some fresh food items, including milk. However, she was very impressed by the service she received. She said the store was clean and the staff behaved impeccably, all the way through to checkout, where they automatically packed her bags without even asking.

Service was also a highlight at the Lammermoor Road Keystore in Glasgow, where our mystery shopper noted that the store was extremely well merchandised and tidy.

Our shopper at the CostCutter in Lodway, Bristol, had a similar experience and praised the store for its tidiness and helpful staff.

The Mace store in Horsham, West Sussex, was also tidy and clean, but our shopper there said there were many gaps on the shelves with product obviously missing. The store also had a shelf tag of £1.79 for a Coca-Cola 2-litre that was price-marked at £1.59.

The Tesco Express on Denmark Villas in Hove, West Sussex, was very clean and well organised when our mystery shopper arrived. However, he reported that the staff were neither helpful nor polite.