Holland and Barrett have opened a concept store, Holland and Barrett More, in Chester, the biggest Holland and Barrett store in the UK.
Last week Holland and Barrett opened the first of 50 new concept stores, Holland and Barrett More, with more due to open over the next two years. The new concept store holds a wide variety of free from products along with nutritional therapists within the store, a juice bar and an expanded range of their usual vitamins and supplements.
The first store opened on Fargate in Chester, Cheshire on the 23rd April and on a visit to there we are pleased to say it looks like a promsing concept. The new store in within the old Waitrose and isn't exactly small to say the least, being new, the shop was very busy with as many people idly wandering round as there were people buying goods.
The back of the shop looked to be more based around their vitamin and supplements, whether they was anything else up there I can't say as I didn't investigate it that much, I was more interested the in the three aisles marked free from.
Inside Holland and Barrett More
The first aisle appeared to be mostly chocolate and snacks with products from many manfucturers including Moo Free and Eskal, there was many dairy free chocolates, sugar free sweets, gluten free pretzels and crisps lining the aisle, one thing I couldn't see which I would have liked was gluten free licquorice, maybe they will stock some of that in the future.
The next aisle held a mix of alsorts, one side holding sauces, condiments, spreads, peanut butter etc, the other bits of alsorts from Eskal included ice cream tubs, puddings, rice cakes and some bread (though I did fail to find any loaves of bread, just Glutafin's part bakes, maybe I walked past them). I did find my favourite cereal from Feel Free down here, a product I always have to buy online as no high street retailer sold it before. I did gasp a litte at the £4.29 price tag though, as usual Holland and Barrett taking their pricing higher than average.
The final aisle, held an assortment of biscuits from Love More's jammie dodgers and oreo type cookies to Angelic's cranberry cookies. I haven't seen such a wide variety of gluten free biscuits in one place I can tell you that. This side also had various cake and bread mixes from some manufacturers I've never heard of and one of my favourites, Delicious Alchemy, who I have been desperate to see more of on the high street. Along with a little more chocolate there was also the Holland and Barrett jelly bean display with it's many flavours and next to that a couple of freezers which didn't appear to have much more in terms of gluten free than the normal Holland and Barrett range and further up still sat their fridges with the usual dairy free Cheese, spreads, vegan fridge products and drinks.
The juice bar is set at the side of the store, it did look like they offered a good variety of smoothies and juices, but it was too busy for me to go and have a proper look, presumably they can offer they gluten free as most juices and smoothies should be naturally gluten free but as mentioned I didn't get chance to look.
Overall the free from range is definitely more expansive with lots of options in some things like with the biscuits but lacking in others, such as bread. Please do be aware or the price though they aren't the cheapest but the variety they have brought to the high street does make up for it. It is so nice to see products you have to order direct from manufacturers in a high street store. I hope the other 49 stores due to open over the next 2 years in currently unknown locations are just as good and offer the variety they do here and maybe other stores will also take note of what Holland and Barrett are starting to offer, there really isn't enough free from -available on the high street at the moment.