Set in the heart of the seaside town of Barry, Clemwood Store is a traditional, family-run business first started by Tracey Clemett-Wood and her husband Antony six years ago. This month, the couple has been awarded the prestigious national CollectPlus ‘Store of the Year’ award. This recognises their achievement as the best store in the CollectPlus network, scoring an impressive 4.95 out of 5 stars for the period between April 2015 and March 2016.
We caught up with Tracey to find out more about how she and her husband have made the store into such a success, and to ask how it feels to win the CollectPlus ‘Store of the Year’ award…
Q. Tell us a bit about Clemwood Store and your experience of managing this successful business.
A. The Clemwood store has been an established part of the community since 1937. I first bought it in 2010 after it had stood empty for a couple of years and left my 9-5 office job to try my hand at running a convenience store. It’s been hard work but I’ve loved every minute of it.
Clemwood is a traditional ‘general’ store, offering everything from groceries to baked goods, and off-licence products to greetings cards. We are located just opposite the station so we attract commuters who pop in for their teas and coffees in the morning and locals venturing down to Cardiff at the weekend.
Our customers are now our friends and we love being able to offer essential services to the local community. We also try to go the extra mile for those who don’t find it as easy to get to us, regularly dropping off shopping to the nursing home opposite and to any customers who fall ill and can’t get out.
Q. How has the CollectPlus service helped you to grow your business?
A. We decided to offer the CollectPlus service because it’s not only a valuable extra service for our existing visitors but it also helps us to attract new customers. When people drop off or pick up their parcels, they tend to browse and buy other things from the store, like a paper or a hot drink, so it’s really benefited us as a business.
Customers have praised the convenience of the service as it fits in with their busy lifestyles. We’re open from 6.30am to 8pm Monday to Saturday and from 8am to 7pm on Sundays, so they can easily pop in before and after work rather than waiting in at home for their deliveries or having things sent to work.
Q. There are over 5,800 newsagents, convenience stores and petrol stations in the CollectPlus network, so how does it feel to have been named the UK’s best CollectPlus store?
A. We are very proud that we’ve won the Store of the Year award – we still can’t quite believe it! This is the first time we’ve run a convenience store and we never expected to win an award. We want to do well though and have worked hard to try and provide great service to everyone who walks through our doors. It’s great to feel that the store has become an integral part of the local community and wonderful to receive such positive feedback directly from our customers.
Q. What are your plans for the future?
A. The store has been open since 1937 so it’s really important to us to make sure it continues to have a role at the heart of the Barry community. We will work with our customers and the local community to provide the essential products and services that they need, from hot teas and coffees to favourite magazines and sweets. We want to keep serving our community and providing first class customer service so that hopefully they’ll stay with us over the years to come.
June 16th 2016 - by @CollectPlus