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BBC: "The rise, fall, and rise of the mini-supermarket"

'Unknown item in bagging area'
(link to web site)

"Sainsbury's will have more convenience stores than supermarkets this year. Tesco already has more than 1,600 branches of Tesco Express. Once threatened with extinction, the mini-supermarket is on the march.

"Sixty years ago the local grocery store was at the heart of the high street. Greengrocers were the gatekeepers to breakfast, lunch and dinner, as shoppers queued to order items from assistants behind counters.

"Then the advent of the self-service store - where customers collected their own groceries in baskets - changed the way the nation shopped.

"... The [recent] availability of town centre sites at lower rents has appealed to companies. Morrisons snapped up Jessop, HMV and Blockbuster stores when they went bust. Aldi bought a former Peacocks store on Kilburn High Road, north-west London, to create a store half their normal size."

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