McColl’s Retail Group has announced a 0.9% drop in like-for-like sales for the six weeks to 11 January, although total sales grew by 4.7%.

The group said it traded “resiliently” over the Christmas period, with more stores opening on Christmas Day compared to the previous year - at 578 compared to 500.

It also acquired its 800th convenience store in the run up to Christmas.

CEO James Lancaster said: “I am delighted to announce a solid trading performance over Christmas and New Year. I would like to thank all our colleagues who have worked incredibly hard over the period to ensure we bring our customers great quality products and services at the most convenience times.

“I am also pleased to report the opening of our 800th convenience store, another significant milestone reached.”