Waitrose Cheltenham

Store: Waitrose Cheltenham, Gloucestershire

Store manager: Mike Snowdon

Opened: October 2002

Size: 59,000 sq ft

Market share: 9.1%

Nearest rivals:
 Tesco – 0.3 miles

Iceland – 0.4 miles

Lidl – 0.6 miles

Sainsbury’s – 1.5 miles

Store data source: Analysis by CACI. 
Call the market planning group on 020 7602 6000

Your store is surrounded by rivals. How do you stand out?

All our partners are engaged and trained to offer the best customer service experience. I speak to partners individually but we also have meetings, and communication notice boards. Six months ago we installed a TV in the corridor floor highlighting key messages so partners are aware of what’s happening in the branch before they head onto the shop floor.

Do you have any unique attractions?

We have a demonstration studio in a separate room. It’s a kitchen with mirrors where people can come in and watch experts, including celebrity chefs, cook. Mary Berry is always very popular. She’s been here twice demonstrating some of her recipes. Paul Hollywood has been here too.

Is this a concept you introduced?

We re-introduced it. The room is also used by schools and WI groups. It can hold 60 people with 12 people cooking. We’ve got bread-making courses for adults coming up, and an initiative where school children can grow their own veg. If they grow enough they can then sell those vegetables at the front of the store and make a bit of money for their school.

What recent changes have you introduced?

Quick Check. Just before Christmas, we took out three mainline tills to install it. It’s going really well – more than 5% of transactions are carried out this way. Customers love it because they find it quick and they like the information on the handset as they’re doing their shop.

What is selling well in store at the moment?

We’re halfway through a four-week beer festival showcasing a lot of craft and local beers.

How has the recent warm weather affected sales?

Normally when we bring out BBQ coals at Easter they don’t start to move until May but they’re selling in great quantities.