East Sussex-based Independent retailer Jempson’s is celebrating its 80th anniversary this year with a number of initiatives, including promotions, store refurbishments and special edition beer.

The family-run group owns two supermarkets, three ‘Local’ convenience stores, a pharmacy, six cafes and a petrol filling station. Its recently-opened Northiam Local store was shortlisted for the ‘Best Small Store’ category at this year’s Convenience Retail Awards and named winner of the ‘Best Communication to Shoppers’ specialist award.

It is refurbishing its two former Budgens-branded stores, in Battle and Rye, with up-to-date Jempson’s branding. Work on the Battle store has already begun, and involves bringing the town Post Office into the store, implementing new bakery and food to go areas, and sharpening the focus on Jempson’s products and local suppliers. Work on the Rye store will begin later in the year.

Jempson’s has introduced a special edition ‘Local Hero’ 80th anniversary beer, produced exclusively by local brewer Old Dairy Brewery, in all its stores.

It is also offering a number of items for 80p, while celebrity chef Rosemary Shrager will be hosting a bread and cake making evening at the Peasmarsh store on 26 June, to coincide with the month when George Thomas Jempson bought the shop in 1935.

Managing director Stephen Jempson said: “To be able to mark our 80th Anniversary is a source of great pride to us, it has not always been easy, but from the beginning we have always gone to great lengths to ensure we always maintain the highest standards possible, and look forward to welcoming, and being of service to our customers in order to achieve our 100th Anniversary and also thank them for their on-going and continued support.”