Wigan convenience store is still a family affair after getting a £250k refurbishment

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A grocery chain’s Wigan branch has been given a major boost following the completion of a £250,000 refurbishment.

The Spar Whelley’s manager Rachel Neacy will lead the store into its new era, alongside her mum Christine as part of her team, sharing a whopping 57 years’ experience between them there.

The 1,800ft sq outlet has been transformed with a range of new features implemented including a Cheeky Coffee machine, a popular Calippo slush machine and fwip ice cream offer to boot.

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Energy-efficient refigeration and freezers have also been installed to expand on their capacity for food and drink whils also improving presentation for customers. Air conditioning has also been installed so that the store remains a comfortable temperature consistently.

Rachel Neacy (right) and her mum Christine (left).Rachel Neacy (right) and her mum Christine (left).
Rachel Neacy (right) and her mum Christine (left).
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Rachel said: “The store changes are fantastic and I’m so proud to say that I manage Spar Whelley.

“I started here when I was 15 years old in 2000 when I came for a part time job, and I’ve been here all my life working my way up through positions to become Store Manager.

“I did go to university where I studied fashion, and I think I utilise those skills in the store when we dress the shop for seasonal events like Easter, Hallowe’en, and Christmas.

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The Whelley store has been given a new lease of life following a £250,000 refurbishment.The Whelley store has been given a new lease of life following a £250,000 refurbishment.
The Whelley store has been given a new lease of life following a £250,000 refurbishment.

“I love working in retail, speaking to the customers every day, and dealing with new situations that arise as no two days are the same.

“We have an amazing team of 15 staff here at Whelley and I’m excited to take the store forward.”

Through new flooring and black ceiling, the store has been given a fresh mordern look and feel with customers having a sight of the full range of products from wherever they are stood thanks to lower-level shelving.

The new features continue at the entrance to the store with a new shop counter and the addition of an automatic sliding door, while outside a ramp has been constructed making access to the store much easier, and an InPost locker has been added next to the ATM.

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Christine said: “I think the best is yet to come with the new features as more and more people become aware of them.

“I’ve seen a lot of changes in the years I have worked here but this refurbishment is definitely the best of them – the store looks absolutely brilliant.

“I honestly don’t know where time has gone. I remember starting here just months after Hunts acquired the store from its previous owners.”

Jack Hunt, retail development manager at Lawrence Hunt & Co. Ltd, said: “Spar Whelley is a great example of a community store with a team who are all local and know our customers well.

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“A lot of work has gone into the complete refurbishment, and we are thrilled with the outcome of the refit.

“We feel we now have a modernised offer that is better aligned to the local area. Early results are encouraging and I’m looking forward to seeing the store progress.

“We are also fortunate to have a team that includes Rachel and Christine who have been wonderful employees for a combined 57 years and counting."

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