Central England Co-operative has announced a 7% increase in like-for-like sales in its convenience stores in its first half trading results.

Total group sales grew by 3.6% to £476.9m in the 28 weeks ending 11 August 2018, while trading profit increased by £1m.

During the six-month period Central England Co-op also invested over £12m in new sites as well as renovating dozens more.

Chief executive Martyn Cheatle said: “In our core food business, like-for-like sales in our convenience stores outperformed the market, with growth of 7% which included exceptional trading during the harsh winter and the hot summer.

“Throughout both spells, our store colleagues and food distribution teams provided great product availability and service in response to the significant increase in demand.”

He added that further new store openings were on schedule for the second half of the year and beyond.