The Heart of England Co-operative Society is to extend a refurbishment programme across its estate following the successful refit of one of its stores.

The society, which operates 33 stores across Coventry, Warwickshire and Leicestershire, has just completed a £1m refurbishment of its store in Balsall Common, Coventry, which had resulted in a 40% sales uplift, said CEO Ali Kurji.

It now planned to revamp three more stores in Coventry at a cost of £600,000 each.

Refits would take account of the environment, said Kurji. "Fixtures will be sourced as locally as possible and we're installing energy-efficient lighting and refrigeration. We are also considering solar panels at one store."

Kurji said he was keen to acquire more stores.

The society reported a 7.2% rise in like-for-like food sales for the six months to the end of June.