Winner: Waitrose Cambridge
Store manager: Steve Long
Size: 31,000 sq
Market share: 29.8%
Sainsbury’s 2.7 miles
Tesco 3.5 miles
Asda 3.8 miles
Store data source: Analysis by CACI.
Call the market planning group on 020 7602 6000
This is the fourth time you’ve won The Grocer 33 store of the week. What is the secret of your success? I’m very fortunate to have won four times. I guess it must be down to being a good old-fashioned trader. Over my 34 years working in retail, I’ve learned that good shop presentation and service is what it’s all about.
The Olympics kicks off this weekend. Are you doing anything special to prepare for the event in your store? We are stocking up on key lines. I imagine we will be selling a lot of party food like ice cream and beer as we would around a World Cup. A lot will depend on the weather and that is very difficult to predict.
How has the recent bad weather affected trading? We are experiencing healthy growth but the summer has definitely been testing so far. In terms of what people have been buying, it has been like a typical autumn with products like ready meals selling well.
You worked in Manchester before. How is the Cambridge shopper different? We have a highly educated group of customers here who are very tuned into ethical trading - more so than in the North West. We also stock some very high quality wines here including a £250 bottle of Penfolds Grange. Some people come regularly from overseas to buy the wine.
The store is one of the biggest in the estate. How does that affect your job? It means that everyone has to be in the right place at the right time for everything to run like clockwork. We have to work very hard on stock management, especially as one of the few double deckers in the Waitrose fleet delivers to the store and we have relatively limited storage space.
If you could change anything, what would be top of your wish list for the store? I would be happy to have a refit to refresh the branch. It would be lovely to extend it to get some more square footage - I’d like to have a kitchen range in the store.