Big four supermarkets' sales fall

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Tesco, Sainsbury's, Asda and Morrisons all saw sales drop in the three months to 11 August, according to data from research firm Kantar.

Morrisons recorded the biggest fall of 2.7% followed by Tesco.

Supermarket data
New data shows a decline in market share compared to the three months to 12 August

Fraser McKevitt, head of retail and consumer insight at Kantar, says: “The memory of last year still looms large for retailers and this summer’s comparatively poor weather, combined with low levels of like-for-like price rises, have made growth hard to find for retailers".

In contrast, the German discounters Aldi and Lidl made big gains, with sales up 6.2% and 7.7% respectively.

Mr McKevitt said Lidl was boosted by opening new stores as well as a drive to persuade customers to do their "big shop" at its supermarkets.

He said the average basket spend is now nearly £19, 3% higher than last year, "though still significantly lower than the £22.65 average spend at the big four".

Discount supermarkets make Plymouth and Torbay plans

Andrew Segal

BBC South West

A new Aldi store at Plympton is set for approval despite concerns about its impact on local shops.

The store chain has come up with revised road upgrades and new information on local shopping habits after a decision was deferred in March.

Plymouth city councillors are now being recommended to allow the scheme in the overflow car park of Chaplin’s in Galileo Close.

Lidl and Aldi signs
PA Media

Meanwhile, rival discount supermarket Lidl is going ahead with plans to reopen a closed Waitrose store in Torquay.

The German-owned retailer has lodged a planning application to convert the supermarket in St Marychurch Road, which would be the chain’s second branch in Torquay as it already has an outlet in Newton Road which it plans to keep open, it has confirmed.

More than 200 jobs were lost with the closure of the Waitrose stores in Torquay and Teignmouth earlier this year.

500 new jobs at Lidl in Scotland

Lidl sign
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Discount supermarket chain Lidl will open 12 new Scottish stores creating around 500 jobs.

The chain already has 98 shops across Scotland, with construction already under way on sites in Dumbarton, Dundee, East Kilbride, Cowdenbeath and Larkhall.

Ross Millar, Lidl's regional director for Scotland, said: "Since opening our very first store in Scotland 25 years ago, we've opened our doors to towns and cities across the country, employing more than 2,200 people."