Supermarket delivery service launches

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Driver Daniel Meadows (left), store manager Paul Clelland, online shopping service manager Abbey MacDougall and team leader Leanna Anderson (right). Photo: Peter Johnson

Driver Daniel Meadows (left), store manager Paul Clelland, online shopping service manager Abbey MacDougall and team leader Leanna Anderson (right). Photo: Peter Johnson

Tesco unrolled its new delivery service today with deliveries to customers throughout the North Mainland – the most northerly delivery route Tesco has even undertaken.

The new service will see deliveries throughout Mainland Shetland with plans being finalised for delivery to the isles.

Tesco has invested in four new Mercedes delivery vans that will take fresh, chilled and frozen produce to customers.

Store manager Paul Clelland said he was delighted at the response to the launch. Mr Clelland, who was taking part in the first deliveries, said he was looking forward to meeting customers on their doorsteps and that the service had been built around the requirements of customers.

In charge of deliveries is manager Abby MacDougall who is assisted by team leader Leanna Anderson. Around 30 jobs have been created to deliver the service including nine customer delivery assistants – drivers in old money – 12 personal shoppers, who make up the orders, and a customer loyalty assistant.

The vans will be delivering to the West Side and North Mainland four days a week. Tesco also plans to launch its click and collect system next week, where customers can order online and pick up their orders from the click and collect bay at the side of the Tesco store in Lerwick.

News of the delivery service recieved a mixed reception from operators of country shops.

Manager of Ollaberry Community Co-op Kathleen Ratter said she feared for the future of rural shops if Tesco started delivering four-times weekly to the country areas.

“It is a threat to peerie country shops. There are a lot of people supporting wis at the moment, but I do worry about this. If people do not keep supporting their local shop there will be no local shop.”

She added that Ollaberry had been very well supported by the community since opening as a co-operative nearly 20 years ago, but that trade had “taken an awful drop” with the opening of Tesco. The creation of a rural delivery service would create another challenge.

Things could possibly be worse in winter with folk choosing to stay snug inside and order from the internet instead of nipping to the local shop.

Bixter Shop owner Margaret Johnston hoped that the roll-out of the Tesco service would not affect sales at Bixter. “We are a top-up shop – the type of shop that someone comes to if they have forgotten to get anything. Hopefully it will not make much difference.”

  How are rural shops planning to face up to the new challenge from the Tesco delivery service? Find out in Friday’s Shetland Times, which includes a special Rural Shops feature.

About Peter Johnson

Reporter for The Shetland Times. I have also worked as an employed and freelance reporter and editor for a variety of print and broadcast media outlets and as as a freelance photographer and film maker/cameraman. In addition to journalism, I have experience in construction, oil analysis, aquaculture, fisheries, the health service and oral history.

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9 comments

  1. Thomas Goodlad

    This will be ok this time of year,but will present many problems during the winter months.

    Would suggest that anyone dependant on this service keep a extra “bough” of flour to hand !

    Reply
  2. fraser cluness

    Very true Thomas, but you should do that anyway no mater how or where you get your food from. tescos are doing what the little shops used to do many years ago, but using vans where if you lived in the toon it was a boy on a bike! or places like the coop (where we lived south in the 70s) had a van.

    tescos have a store in evey uk postcode and im sure it snows there as well, so im sure they have a weather policy they use. What happens when we have no boat will be interesting, but im sure the store will handle that too.

    even the country shops get their stock from the wholesalers in lerwick so if it snows perhaps they will be in the same boat as the rest of us

    Reply
    • Ali Inkster

      Since you brought it up Fraser, we make a run to Lerwick every day wind rain or snow, what always gets me is the number of folk that never set foot in the shop door 364 days of the year but the first flake of snow and they appear like wraiths,(all be it wraiths in 4x4s) buying up every last loaf of bread and pint of milk. No thought to the rest of the community who use the shop every day. The council did have a scheme for getting grants for improvements or even a new van, so when the council announced that they were reducing gritting it coincided with our need for a new van. A 4×4 would seem like the sensible choice after all we have to get in and out of the town in all weathers. So we shopped around and there was 2 options one cost £30,000+ the other £16,000, what one do you think the council would offer help with. That,s right the £30,000 one. We told the council to poke their grant where the sun don’t shine and bought the cheaper one. The one coincidently that had a longer warranty and a reputation for keeping going no matter what. Well the way things are going there might not be a shop in Burra next winter so those snow wraiths will have to get their milk and bread from tesco, I just wonder if they will still deliver once all the rural shops close, or how keen they will be to deliver a bottle of milk and a loaf of bread when they have there obligatory SIC days off.

      Reply
  3. Sandy McDonald

    Had a delivery yesterday – brilliant service, driver was cheerful and helpful, it will be nice to be able to visit the town at the weekends without trailing through the supermarkets for an hour! To be honest this scheme is more likely to encourage us to shop on the street and at bolts as we will have more time to spare when in town (more time for coffee and cake as well!). It also won’t stop us getting peeire essentials at the local shops.

    Reply
  4. Christine R. Lewis

    If you don’t want to sell your goods to ‘snow raiths’ then don’t. You’re under no obligation to and you’re free to keep items back for ‘the rest of the community who use the shop every day’

    It might be preferable to accepting trade from your infrequent customers, then having a pop at them online.

    Reply
    • Ali Inkster

      Christine as they do nothing to support the shop the rest of the year quite frankly they can go to tesco or get tesco to deliver when it snows. if you think my having a pop at them will outrage them enough to never set foot through the door again so be it, (Their £5 / year will make no odds). At least then the folk that rely on the shop won’t be left without milk or other essentials when it comes a sudden snow fall. The rural shops are an integral part of the community, I seriously doubt anyone that runs one is doing it for the money, if they are they will be sorely disappointed.

      Reply
      • George David

        Hi Ali! I was reading some articles posted ages ago and one on Oil& Gas workers and some fuss about. Would you mind telling me how the debate ended up? I saw your name on the comments and ran into you over here again. Apologies for any inconvenience!

      • Neil Anderson

        A bit lik da folk dat nearly had a punch up in Tesco’s ower a bag o brussel sproots !

  5. fraser cluness

    “The rural shops are an integral part of the community” like schools and public halls they are only integral to the people who use them, Id suggest the rest of the folk duna realy care?? i have no school (or family) or shop where i live and im hardly ever in the hall so its not so high im my agenda. althoughj i do appreceate the meaning to thoese that do.

    Reply

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