Winner: Waitrose Newton Mearns, Glasgow

Store manager: James Breckenridge

Opened: 2011

Size: 25,000 sq

Market share: 28.2%

Nearest rivals:

Asda 1.4 miles,

Sainsbury’s 2 miles

Store data source: Analysis by CACI.


Waitrose is relatively new to Scotland. What have you done to establish the branch in Newton Mearns since opening nine months ago? We’ve been active in the community, giving talks in schools and raising money for local charities – so far we’ve donated £8,000. In-store, we’ve worked hard to ensure that the quality of service lives up to the brand.

Our mystery shopper said staff were very obliging. What have you done to build up the team? We put a lot of effort into training. We’re an almost entirely new team with only four experienced Waitrose partners and some who are new to grocery.

Does Waitrose do anything differently in Scotland? We have a lot of autonomy to run our own promotions – like we did last week for Burns Night. We also stock a lot of food from local farmers and suppliers. We have about 400 local lines including a lot of fish and cheeses, as well as Irn-Bru of course!

Glasgow is a long way from your DCs in the South of England. How does that affect the day-today running of the store? In an ideal world our deliveries would arrive in the middle of the night. As it is, they arrive just before store opening, which means we have to be really disciplined .

How has the new ‘you count’ range gone down? The launch coincided nicely with the new year health drive. It’s been selling really well. The packaging and prominent display of the calorie count make it really clear what it’s all about.

Have you run into any problems with ‘you count’ promotional posters and unfortunately placed window panes? No, thankfully . In some ways, though, you could say any publicity is good publicity!

You’re relatively new to grocery. How does it compare with other sectors? I joined Waitrose just over a year ago after three to four years at Ikea and 10 years at Dixons. Waitrose is like an amalgamation of the two, combining the service culture of Dixons and the challenge of a high stock turnaround at Ikea.