Sainsbury’s launches next generation state-of-the-art store

Sainsbury’s has just opened the doors to its relaunched Hempstead Valley supermarket in Kent, showcasing its latest product offer and format design.

After eight months of redevelopment works, the 62,000 sq ft supermarket has been transformed into a next generation state-of-the-art Sainsbury’s store. The new-look supermarket provides a customer-first experience, with the local community now enjoying a brighter, fresher superstore with enhanced product and service offering.

The store is a spacious, welcoming and safe shopping destination, that features exciting and vibrant signage designs, including colourful displays and neon lights to showcase fresh in-store offers.

The supermarket is home to the first Sainsbury’s Fresh Food Market, new-look café, dedicated on-the-go hub with snacking, coffee machine, fresh juicer and sushi bar, plus Argos store in store offer. The multi-million pound investment works also involved transforming the beauty department and clothing and home section and installing a new self-service patisserie counter, as well as a takeaway hot food bar including the retailer’s popular pizza counter.

The works also extend beyond the shop floor, with improvements made to the colleague wellbeing area to ensure a more interactive and inspiring team workplace, including new furniture and digital notice boards, complemented by new painting and decorative works. Sainsbury’s petrol station next door to the store has also been redeveloped for customers to enjoy, including more on-the-go ranges and home essentials such as cleaning products and toiletries.

Sainsbury’s has operated from the Hempstead Valley site for over 40 years, with the renewal representing one of its largest single store investments in around 20 years. Sainsbury’s announced in October it would pilot its new Fresh Food Market in the Kent store and, if successful, would look to rollout to more stores.

Sainsbury’s has been delighted by customer and colleague feedback on the new food hall format and design and will commence a trial across more stores in 2021. The Fresh Food Market is brought to life with a market-style presentation of fresh fruit and vegetables, new signage and a focus on seasonality and proud British Heritage.

The changes to the store are also expected to save the business approximately 30% in gas use and 15% in electricity annually. Sainsbury’s is committed to operating its stores sustainably and in line with its ambitious target to be Net Zero across its own operations by 2040 and has invested in new in-store initiatives to better operate the Hempstead Valley supermarket.

The store has undergone a complete refrigeration refit, including to install aerofoil technology to keep the fridges cool and aisles warmer to save 15 per cent of the energy used by the fridge.

The store is also now more efficient through the roll out of a store-wide refrigeration integrated heating and cooling system and new fast closing doors for the loading dock. It is more water efficient with new water saving taps and reduced flush toilets, plus waterless urinals.

Sainsbury’s Property Director, Patrick Dunne said, “Our Hempstead Valley store gives our customers a one-stop shop experience. We’re really proud of it and the way in which we have completed the refurbishment works for our customers as efficiently and safely as possible.

'We have undergone eight months of work and through the patience and support of the local community have continued to trade throughout. We have completed an extraordinary amount of work to improve the product and service experience for our local customers and we know the changes we have made will be enjoyed for many years to come.

'We will also use many of the learnings throughout the phases of work, together with the ongoing feedback from our customers and colleagues on our changes, to help us as we continue to invest in our stores. We’re investing in our stores because we want our stores to be a hub of inspiration to help our customers create the plate of food that best serves them and their family.”

Sainsbury’s Hempstead Valley Superstore Manager, John Webb said, “We’re so excited to relaunch our new store for our customers. We’re so grateful for the support of the local community during the redevelopment works and we know our customers will really enjoy the completed result.”