Stroud (210): Opening

Waitrose Stroud opened its doors on November 23rd 1993.

Larger than any previous branch (at the time), Stroud includes all the features we have come to expect, from scanning to fresh flowers, plus a coffee shop and customer toilets.

Running down the centre is a broad canyon of frozen food which culminates in the bright colours of the meat and fish departments along the back wall. The patisserie counter is not in its usual position, next to the other counters, but instead near the front of the branch where it forms part of the coffee shop. Customers could buy items from the counter to take away or eat in the coffee shop. This area is screened from the main part of the store, and there is plenty of room for customers to keep their trolleys with them, if they wish.

It was also reported at the time in The Partnership’s in-house magazine, The Gazette, that the new store had an enhanced assortment of non-food items, especially household goods and coffee making equipment.

The branch, which is set back behind a substantial car park, has the selling floor and warehouse on the ground level and the offices and other facilities above.

It is in an ideal position being within walking distance of the High Street but also well placed on the road system for customers coming from further afield.

A lot of thought and tasting went into the coffee choice at the new cafe, with Mr Richard James, Assistant Buyer commenting that he had “tasted many different coffees at Bracknell before deciding.” He continues that there was one espresso and one blend; the others are pure coffees from a single country of origin. The coffees include two from Southern India and one from Ethiopia, that are on sale for customers to buy.

Facilities currently available at Stroud include fresh fish, cheese, delicatessen, rotisserie, sushi, meat, bakery counters and a wine bar. There is also flower wrapping, dry cleaning and click and collect at this branch.

Address: London Road, Stroud, Gloucestershire, GL5 2AP

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