If you’ve been reading newspapers this week, you could be forgiven for thinking we’re doomed. With constant reminders of a credit crunch, sliding stocks and the first utterings of the ‘R’ word from Gordon Brown and Bank of England governor Mervyn King, the media seem to think we’d be better off hiding under our duvets for the next six months.

I may be a ‘glass half full’ kind of person, but it’s not hard to find a shining light amid the gloom – Booths, for example. This week the northern supermarket chain revealed a 5.4% increase in sales and a 73% increase in pre-tax profit for the year to 29 March, with like-for-like sales up 3.8%. And since March, sales remain 4% ahead of the year before.

Booths may be trading in a part of the country that is relatively sheltered from the credit crunch, but it’s a massive achievement for an independent retailer that has shown rivals Marks & Spencer and Waitrose it is possible to sell high-quality groceries as the economy heads south. Yes, it’s dabbled with 50p promotions, but it’s sticking to its roots and flying the flag for provenance and quality.