Central England Co-op reveals £12m invested in estate over year

Central England Co-operative has revealed it has invested nearly £12m and created hundreds of jobs as part of major expansion plans during 2019.

Throughout the year the Society has opened 10 new food stores and two new funeral booking offices, as well as relaunching nine convenience stores, and six funeral homes.

The major development programme has seen investment in the following areas: Birmingham, Stafford, Nottingham, Cambridgeshire, Norfolk, Suffolk, Derbyshire and Leicestershire.

The food stores now offer shoppers an expansive range of products and are fitted out with pioneering new energy efficient refrigeration technologies and LED lighting to minimise environmental impact. Many of the stores also includes free water refill stations, phone charging areas, indoor and outdoor seating, collection points for local food banks and customer toilets.

Links also continued to be forged with the local community via inviting local schools to design special pieces of artwork that have now been placed on the inside or outside of the stores.

Store Manager Paul Murray said, “All of us here at Central England Co-operative food stores across our trading area are proud to be part of such great communities and are looking forward to welcoming all customers, old and new, to come and enjoy our new and revamped Food Stores.”

All new and revamped funeral homes now offer a vastly superior look and feel for families and include new and improved decoration, flooring, lighting, bathroom facilities and air conditioning.

Funeral Director Anneliese Hupfield said: “Our first priority is to enhance memories and love for all of our families and we are very pleased to offer that at our revamped and new homes. We feel they reflect our commitment to providing excellent standards of care for our families during their time of bereavement.”

The funeral homes offer a 24-hour service, seven days a week.

The work throughout 2019 has been part of an ambitious food store and funeral home development programme, with further investment planned during 2020.