Steve Browne, General Manager of the Heart of England Co-operative Society, Ali Kurji, Chief Executive, and Clive Miles, President

Wednesday, July 08, 2021

The Heart of England Co-operative Society is welcoming customers through the doors of its new-look Bulkington Food store following a refurbishment costing almost £872,000.

As part of the project The Co-operative, in School Road, has been reduced in size to accommodate an adjoining independent retail unit.

The Society has also broadened its customer offering by introducing a range of new features including a photo booth and photo printing facility, Amazon Locker and Rug Doctor.

The interior refurbishment also includes new, energy-efficient lighting and refrigeration as part of the retailer’s ongoing quest to reduce its carbon footprint.

On the outside of the store the society has installed dog ties and a cycle rack and there is also a public bench.

There is also a life-saving defibrillator on the outside of the store for use in the wider Bulkington community.

Steve Browne, General Manager of the Heart of England Co-operative Society’s Food Division, said: “More than a stop-off point just to buy essentials or grab a bite to eat on the way home from work, all of our new stores as well as our refurbishment projects such as Bulkington are now designed with the theme of Your Community Store in mind.

“This means we are broadening our offering as much as possible to accommodate the wide-ranging needs of our customers under one roof.

“Across our stores we are also seeing more evidence of customers seeking a bit more of an experience – maybe socialising with others from their neighbourhoods, grabbing a coffee and making use of our seated areas before or after they shop.

“We are delighted with the result of the refurbishment project at Bulkington and look forward to our customers seeing the new-look store for themselves.”

Other features already inside the store include Rollover hot dogs, Costa Coffee, Tropical Ice and Tango Ice Blast slush machines.

A survey conducted by ThoughtWorks earlier this year revealed consumers have switched to shopping local since the start of Covid-19 and that only half of UK consumers expected to return to supermarkets in the future.

And another survey by the Institute of Grocery Distribution showed that basket sizes at convenience stores nationwide had increased with home cooking essentials becoming increasingly popular.