Are you proud of your store? Do you think it matches up to the very best around? If so, we want to hear from you.

 Today marks the launch of the Convenience Retail Awards programme for 2012, and we’re on the lookout for the best of the best.

Awards categories:

The awards programme is divided into two main parts. The store awards celebrate outstanding all-round achievement in the field of convenience retailing and are divided into small, medium and large store categories, with the medium-sized stores divided again into multiple (10 stores or more in the same ownership) and independent sub-categories. 

The store awards sectors are: 
Best small store (less than 1,500sq ft) 
Best independent store (1,500-3,000sq ft) 
Best multiple store (1,500-3,000sq ft) 
Best large store (3,000-10,000sq ft) 

One of these four winners will also be named as our overall winner and receive the biggest accolade in the c-store industry Convenience Retailer of the Year.
There are also a number of special category awards up for grabs, to recognise outstanding achievement in one of the key disciplines of convenience retailing, and opportunities to nominate the fellow retailers, wholesalers and products that have made a major contribution to retailers’ businesses during the past year. These are: 

Best Customer Service, supported by Today’s Group 
Responsible Retailing Award, supported by Imperial Tobacco 
Best Chilled Food Retailer, supported by Muller Dairy 
Excellence in Impulse Award, supported by Britvic Soft Drinks 
News Retailer of the Year, supported by The Sun 
Zero Tolerance Award for Crime Prevention, supported by Loomis 
Sustainable Retailing Award, supported by PepsiCo 
Best Milk Retailer, supported by Robert Wiseman Dairies 
Product of the Year, supported by Today’s Group 
Best Wholesale Business Initiative, supported by him! Research & Consulting 
Lifetime Achievement Award 

All award winners will be revealed at our presentation dinner at the Grand Connaught Rooms, London, on the evening of March 15, 2012. All shortlisted retail finalists will be invited to join us for the evening, including travel and accommodation.

 The local retailing market is as tight and competitive as it has been at any point in living memory, so now is the ideal time to give your business and your staff a boost by putting yourself forward for an award, because the positive publicity and focus on high standards that an award-winning store delivers is the ideal way to promote your business to your customers.

If you still need convincing of the value of entering the awards, just ask the reigning Convenience Retailer of the Year James Brundle, whose Spar store in Walthamstow, East London, which he runs with his three business partners, picked up the top award in March.

“Winning the award has been one of the best things that has happened to our business,” says James. “The win itself created a huge buzz in the local area with countless stories appearing about us in the local papers and of course the internet, and customer numbers have soared as a result.

“Before the win we were turning over just under £40,000 a week, but that has now risen to more than £45,000 thanks mostly to the rise in shopper numbers and more regular footfall.

“The awards are also very prominently displayed at the front of the store where they continue to create a talking point among local shoppers, and even months after the event they are a constant reminder that this is a quality business with strong aims and values.

“The win has also worked wonders for boosting staff morale and enthusiasm. It made our staff see that all their hard work really did count and was valued, and it has set a bar for standards which we must always endeavor to raise.

“I’d encourage everyone to enter this award, it’s the big one, the one everyone and every store should aspire to win. It’s also a fabulous night out if you do!”

What we are looking for

Entries need to be made on the official entry form or online at and accompanied by photographs either on a disk, stick or sent by email.

Use the form and the photographs to show your store in the best possible light, as the C-Store team will use these to draw up a shortlist of candidates, who will then be visited by an independent judge.

How to enter:

All entries must be made on an official entry form. You can: Call: 01293 610354 
Download a form or enteronline at the awards website: 
Email: Entries must be received by November 11, 2011

Your entry needs to give us a flavour of your business approach, trading history and success, along with exceptional store standards, staff and community engagement. If your store has the wow factor, don’t be shy about telling us!

If you are entering one or more of the specialist category awards, please remember to include a separate sheet or pack outlining in detail your approach to that particular category.

Good luck with your entry, and we look forward to hearing from you.