Lancashire-based supermarket chain Booths has recorded solid year end results against the backdrop of a difficult retail market.
In a year with no new store openings, the business recorded a sales growth of just over one per cent with total sales of £282million.
Profits before tax rose by 6.9 per cent.
The welcome news comes as Booths prepares for the largest and most ambitious expansion in the group’s history, opening five new stores by 2016.
The programme starts with Barrowford in December, and Hale Barns in April 2015.
The results were attributed to robust Christmas trading figures, where Booths drove sales ahead of the market by 6.1 per cent, followed by impressive seasonal marketing activity with the launch of their first Christmas Book.
Booths also introduced over 200 own-label lines.
Chairman Edwin Booth said: “Against the backdrop of some of the most challenging trading conditions of my career, I am proud that Booths has remained true to its core values and expressed these in a modern approach to retailing.
“Booths competes against large national and international competition by being swift on their feet, inspirational to our customers and offering the best quality goods available.”
This season, Booths has expanded on its plans for Christmas, and for the first time in the history of Booths, goods in the Christmas guide will be available for delivery nationwide.
Mr Booth said: “Booths has always been a Northern secret, and this year we’re delivering Christmas to the nation.
“The Christmas range focusses on the very best seasonal food and drink.
“From Goosnargh goose to award winning mince pies made by a craft baker in Cumbria; food made with care, integrity and pride.”
Close relationships with suppliers has always been core to the Booths brand.
Earlier this year, Booths launched “Fair Milk,” an initiative which assures Booths pays their milk producers the highest farm gate price on the market.