Ottery DIY store picks up top award

An Ottery DIY shop is ‘absolutely delighted’ to have scooped the top industry award at a gala dinner in Manchester.

Abbotts beat off hundreds of rival stores from up and down the country to pick up ‘Best Hardware Store’ in the UK last week.

Owner Tony Abbott said: “When you think of how many independent DIY and hardware stores there are across the UK, to win this is a fantastic achievement.

“We are very proud to have won this, but really it’s a big thank you to all of our customers really, without their support we could not have achieved this.”

The family-run business, which also has a branch in Seaton, found out they had made it down to the last four, and were invited to the Hilton hotel in central Manchester to see who would get the gold award.

Leading figures from across the DIY and garden industry were in attendance, and the awards were presented by the comedian and television presenter Paul Tonkinson.

A short video was shown of each of the finalists, and Tony admitted after watching them he thought they didn’t have a chance of winning, so when their name was read out he said he couldn’t believe it.

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Abbott’s had to meet very tough criteria to be nominated for the award, including showing exceptional customer service, value for money, and both branches of the store were visited by mystery shoppers, who graded their performance.

Tony said they were all really delighted, and hopes being named the country’s top hardware retailer Ottery St Mary on the map.