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The nearest Tesco Express is about ten minutes drive away from where we live, if we are on the way to visit my Aunt then we will often stop there and pick up a newspaper and a few essentials. Our Tesco Express is a relatively new building and when it first opened the locals showed mixed feelings about having a mini-supermarket on their doorstep. The building is modern with a glass frontage and inside you have to give credit where credit is due the store is spotless and I have never once been in there and found it otherwise.
Our Tesco Express has an amazing range of fresh flowers which are well displayed and are on offer at good prices, I will often pick up a bunch as a gift for my Aunt. It is possible to get a good sized bunch of mixed blooms for under a fiver and they are always as fresh as a daisy. I also like to have a good look at the community notice board when I am in the store, it has items that are for sale or wanted and sometimes there are part time jobs advertised too. There are plenty of newspapers and magazines on display to choose from and no shortage of children's comic books.
On the shelves you will find pretty much everything that you will need but the prices are slightly higher. If I need more than three or four items it pays me to visit the larger supermarket rather than pay the increased prices. But having said that it is still possible to buy a bargain or two and there are baskets and shelves throughout the store that carry these well advertised bargains. Our Tesco Express stock a good selection of fruit and vegetables, they are regularly checked and if you strike lucky you may well pick up some fruit or veg that has been substantially reduced – that doesn't mean to say that it is worse for the wear either, I have had some excellent reduced produce.
Likewise with the fresh meat and fish, Tesco Express only keep a minimal amount in the chiller cabinets which means that there is less chance of waste but you can often find a good reduction there too. The bakery department is filled with freshly baked bread and rolls that are brought in from the Tesco bakery in the town nearby and this means that there is a constant supply of fresh bread. But they also stock sliced Warburton's bread, crumpets, teacakes and a selection of cakes.
The store has two self service tills and one larger checkout that is manned. The self service tills used to baffle me but now I have got the hang of them and if there are a few queuing then I will use one. The staff in the Tesco Express seem to change quite regularly and I have noticed that there are often a lot of new faces. At the self service checkouts there is always a good supply of recyclable carrier bags which are free to all.
I am sure that the busiest area is the wine, spirits and cigarette counter, no matter when you go into the store there will always be people waiting to be served. At the end of the same counter they have the National Lottery machine so this creates another gathering. Of course you can pay using cash, credit or debit card and you can collect Tesco clubcard points on your purchases as normal.
Our Tesco Express has a large area of easily accessible free parking and that is a huge draw. Passing traffic can easily pull in and park safely to use the store. Outside there is also a cash point which is very well used by the local community.
When Tesco put in planning permission for the store there were many local residents who were hopping mad, they bitterly complained that the major supermarkets were taking over lock stock and barrel but as time has gone on I think that most of the doubters have realised that the store offers the local community quite a lot.