Celebrating its 28th year, Pro Retail has again attracted leading exhibitors to the International Centre in Telford.

From April 27-28 more than 180 suppliers will be sharing their expertise and advising independent and multiple retailers on new products to help them improve their businesses.

Visitors will once more be offered a package that includes free nationwide coach transport to and from the exhibition, or free car parking, along with free entry to the show and a complementary show guide. There is no charge for lunch or refreshments, either.

On top of that, Palmer and Harvey independent ambient or chilled and frozen customers will be able to place orders at the show, taking advantage of more than 100 exclusive deals from manufacturers and suppliers. Registered visitors will also be sent a leaflet prior to the show featuring a range of deals, with a full ordering book available at the show.

Palmer and Harvey marketing director Richard Hayhoe says: “Retailers told us that the 2009 show was the best format ever. So we’ve stuck with a winning formula, but we’ve gone on to add even more value to make 2010 better still.”

At last year’s show Palmer and Harvey unveiled the new-look Mace format and this year another Best in Class Mace store will be showcasing the latest product ranges and marketing materials, highlighting merchandising and ranging ideas.

In a first for Pro Retail, a Best in Class Mace forecourt store will also be displayed.

On the Palmer and Harvey stand retailers can take part in a free store ‘health check’ where they’ll be given ideas on improving profits. Its new 24-hour online ordering service will make its debut, too. The service remembers previous orders, allowing retailers to adjust and re-order week to week.

The ‘real life’ category zones will be back for a second year, promising to be bigger and more interactive, giving retailers a chance to experience store layout, product range and merchandising through the eyes of the customer.

The manufacturers’ stands look set to be a hive of activity. Müller Dairy will be unveiling a number of new initiatives designed for c-store retailers, including a convenience merchandising pack containing top tips on display and pos, as well as details of a competition to find the best yogurt and chilled pot dessert displays.

Visitors to the JTI stand will be able to take part in the JTI Flight Simulator Challenge, while the new SwanHonda bike and one of the SwanHonda British Superbike riders will be on the Republic Technologies UK stand.

This year Nestlé is offering retailers the chance to win a football shirt signed by Sir Geoff Hurst in a competition designed to coincide with Nestlé’s Kit Kat Cross Your Fingers promotion which is running throughout the summer. Entry cards for the competition are available on the Nestlé stand and that of Pro Retail official media partner Convenience Store.

It will be all go on the Sweet Charity stand, too. The UK confectionery industry’s charity will be holding a Rowing Challenge at the event, during which the charity’s director general Patrick Davis and 35 representatives from leading manufacturers will take part in a sponsored indoor rowing challenge. The group aim to row 209 miles over the event, the distance between Palmer and Harvey’s head office in Hove, East Sussex, and the Telford Exhibition Centre, to raise money for the charity.

For those who want to carry on the celebrations into the evening, the Gala Dinner, on Tuesday, April 27, will provide an opportunity to network and relax while enjoying a three-course dinner plus live entertainment.

During the evening the Supplier and Retailer Excellence Awards will be presented including Symbol Retailer of the Year, CTN Retailer of the Year, Forecourt Retailer of the Year and Convenience Retailer of the Year.

For details on how to register for the exhibition itself or get tickets to the Gala Dinner, go to www.pro-retail.co.uk.