BOOMING Sainsbury’s has been honoured for returning to Bognor Regis.
The store’s manager has received the Britten Trophy from the town’s chamber of commerce for making the biggest commercial contribution in the area in the past year.
Manager Tim Maginnis said the presentation topped off a successful initial six months for the Shripney Road outlet.
“I realise the significance of the trophy to Bognor,” he said, “because it’s a traders’ cup.
“We are here to stay and we want the town to be prosperous.”
He revealed the store - which opened more than 20 years after the previous one closed - had become a big success since it opened last November
It was set to finish its first year almost £5.5m ahead of its expected annual takings with £105,000 extra going through its tills every week.
This was caused by each shopper spending an average £33 each time they go to the till £33 compared to the anticipated £26. The result of this success had enabled the store to already reach 85 per cent of its two year target takings.
Customers were also giving the store’s staff a 9/10 satisfaction rating compared to the national average of 6.5-seven.
Chamber of commerce president and chairman Nick Stuart-Nicolson said Sainsbury’s were deserved winners.
Its store had risen from the rubble of the old Lec Refrigeration fridge and freezer factory on the A29 Shripney Road.
“Sainsbury’s have shown confidence in Bognor by coming back to the town.
“They have also become major employers, with 350 members of staff who are local people, and they have reduced the number of people travelling out of the town to do their shopping by giving them a branch here,” he said.
He pointed out the company joined such important business names in the trophy’s past such as Butlin’s and Lec Refrigeration since it was first awarded in 1952.
Nick Gibb, the town’s MP, said: “I remember being on this site in the Lec building wondering what was going to happen to it.
“It’s wonderful to be standing here several years later in the Sainsbury’s store on the site. It’s also good the new store has brought more competition into the town.”
Paul Wells, the town mayor of Bognor, said: “I think everybody locally is so grateful to Sainsbury’s for cleaning up the Lec site and making the entrance into Bognor far better.
“Hopefully, Sainsbury’s will be here for many years working with the community.”
The trophy was presented in a ceremony at the store on June 7.