Retail Oscar for shop that goes extra mile

Malcolm Hall, second from left, with comedian Milton Jones, Steve Rich, customer development manager at Mondel'z International (award sponsor) and David Shrimpton, editor of Independent Retail News.
Malcolm Hall, second from left, with comedian Milton Jones, Steve Rich, customer development manager at Mondel'z International (award sponsor) and David Shrimpton, editor of Independent Retail News.

It’s the human touch that has helped Malcolm Hall’s Supershop clinch a top accolade at this year’s 2015 Retail Industry Awards.

The shop, at the Annagh Bridge, which has won the Independent Retailer of the Year category, was lauded for its support for the local community, among other qualities, at a ceremony at Grosvenor House Hotel in London.

Judges heard that on one occasion, staff were concerned that an elderly customer had not visited the store as usual to pick up her newspaper, so they called at her house to find that she had collapsed.

They were able to raise the alarm and get her the attention she urgently needed.

Said Mr Hall, “The lady, who was in her 80s, called in when she got out of hospital. Her doctor told her that if she had lain for another couple of hours she would have died.”

The store has gone from strength to strength following an extensive refit programme last year, which saw it extend its fresh, chilled and green grocery range.

It has also added new products to meet demand from its Eastern European customers, including olives, different varieties of sausage such as pepperoni and chorizo, as well as iced coffee and teas.

Mr Hall added, “In general, we like to keep a diverse range so that if someone is having a curry they can call in and find naan brad or chutneys.

“Our instore bakery has also expanded and is very popular as is our freshly ground coffee.

“Because we are part of the Costcutters Group we can be very competitive price-wise, while still being convenient and friendly.

“We know a lot of our customers by their first name.”

The shop, which has been managed by Mr Hall since 1998, beat stores from across the UK to scoop the award which recognises product quality, support for the local community and customer service.

Mr Hall thanked his team of nine staff for the hard work they had put in as well as the shop’s loyal customers.

The Retail Industry Awards are considered the ‘Oscars’ of the retail industry.