Six years after it almost closed the Athlone branch of B&Q has been recognised as one of the DIY chains best-performing stores in the UK and Ireland.
The local outlet, in the Arcadia retail Centre, was recently shortlisted for the prestigious ‘B&Q store of the Year’ award.
It was one of just three stores to be shortlisted out of 300 located here and in the UK.
The manager of B&Q Athlone, Sandra Kelly Darcy, said the “fighting spirit” of the staff contributed to the store’s turnaround in recent years.
“I feel the success of the Athlone store built on the enthusiasm and passion of each of the 48 members of staff” she said.
“We also have five kitchen and bathroom designers in store who can offer a 3D design with no appointment necessary,” added Sandra.
In March of 2013 it was announced that the store would be closing for good, but that decision was reversed when improved lease terms were agreed for the Arcadia premises. At some 51,000 square feet- more than an acre, under one roof- B&Q Athlone is the largest DIY outlet in the Midlands.
Factors such as sales performance, customer response, health and safety audit, and team engagement were all taken into consideration when shortlisting B&Q Athlone for ‘store of the year’.
“We are very proud to make it into the top three out of all the B&Q stores,” Sandra commented last week. “it has been a privilege to have led this team throughout 2018’s landmark achievements.”
There are eight B&Q stores in the Republic of Ireland, and the one in Athlone is the first Irish branch to have been shortlisted for ‘store of the year’.
The local store includes a kitchen showroom, bathroom showroom and an outdoor Garden Centre. B&Q is part of the Kingfisher group, which is the second largest DIY retailer in Europe.
CREDIT: Westmeath Independent