The Deterioration of Bell Green Sainsbury’s



Bring on the Aldi.


I usually get deliveries from Sainsbury’s which come from Bell Green. There were always slots available the night before, at least on weekdays. But for the past month, I now need to book two or three days ahead.

I asked one of the delivery guys why, and he said new management. Something also about nobody supervising the staff who do the online shop in-store, slowing everything down. I said I could write to complain. He said it wouldn’t make any difference!


I don’t normally go to Bell Green as without a car it’s a pain waiting for the rare 356. I only go when I need something unusual, as the choice is wider than in FH.

But I’ve been disappointed at the diminution of choice and slow restocking at the FH Sainsbury’s as well. Sainsbury’s needs to deal with this.


Yeah, echoing all this. It’s got very poor, very quickly. Still, at least we can get sushi now :roll_eyes:


yeah I notice this too, especially on a Sunday the shelves can be very bare, and quite often they’ll go weeks without things I’d consider normal like an aubergine or courgette. Staff are good there mind, I don’t blame them


Hmmm… Yes and no. Overall they aren’t responsible for the running of the store but the ones manning the self-service chechouts are often slow, sullen and unhelpful.


I agree, the Bell Green Sainsbury’s has been noticeably worse over the past couple of months. The queues have been very bad lately and I generally shop weekday afternoons so they shouldn’t be that bad.

Items are often not in stock.

The herbs & spices shelf is bizarre - for the past few weeks there’s been a shelf piled high with packs of jars and you have to root through them to find the one you want as they’ve not bothered to restock the shelf properly.

The trolleys are not returned to store and are left in the car park, until there’s a long line of trolleys that you have to drive around.

I don’t bother taking my kids to the cafe anymore as the last two times was told there was a 45 minute wait for food.

I don’t blame the staff in-store as they seem to be doing as best they can. I can only guess it is reductions in staff numbers, poor management, or both.

I go to that store as it’s convenient to get everything in one place but I am seriously considering going elsewhere now.


I can’t speak for everyone here but they’ve got me by the bollocks and I’m guessing they know it along with so many like me: Single, professional or trades (I’m trade) focusing on their jobs, etc. There’s no way I’m getting off the train at Lewisham to shop in Tesco and then carry all my shopping down to Lower Sydenham on the 181 after a day’s work.


Just thought I’d mention the stress free and smooth trip to Sainsbury’s I had on Sunday. Busier than usual, but I put that down to being a Sunday (I usually go Monday evenings when I know it will be quiet). Didn’t witness any of the the above mentioned issues. I’ll keep going back.


Let’s hope the prospect of Aldi opening a store on the Toys ‘R’ Us site will force Sainsbury’s to up its game.


Just shop online! Ocado is much cheaper than Sainsbury or Tesco. You are not tempted by store displays so will spend less. It is environmentally friendly; just one van on the road instead of twenty cars going to the supermarket. The quality of fresh food is extremely high.


Normally pop in to Bell Green to stock up for a few days and find it hassle free usually


I’m within easy walking distance of Sainsbury’s though, and our household schedule tends to vary so being able to pop in there is much easier than having to plan in advance and shop online! Plus walking to the shops is even more environmentally friendly :grin:


I use Ocado a fair amount but the main advantage of the big Sainsburys for me is that they have so much of the fresh produce loose. I often want to buy one carrot, one leek or one pepper or something like that for a recipe and with Ocado I always have to buy more than I want, and get it in plastic packaging.

There are far, far fewer of the tempting ‘offers’ than there used to be in the big supermarkets. No BOGOFFs or similar, just temporary price promotions on some items. So there is less chance these days of coming out of Sainsburys with far more than you intended.


I have given up on Forest Hill and Bell Green Sainsbury’s and now go to the Penge branch. They seem to have far more choice in fresh produce, meat, bread, herbs and spices and loads more. Not so much in the frozen meat section but that doesn’t bother me. Free parking and the staff are always very pleasant too.


The NewsShopper just covered it, featuring comments by @RachaelDunlop:


Hmmm. Some interesting comments on another forum, relating to the decaying infrastructure - indicating the company don’t see a long term future for the store, belief that Sainsbury’s may be considering closing the site - if it were not for the recent investment in Argos and Specsavers and money-saving operations to make the site seem more profitable that it is prior to a merger with Asda.

These comments, however, seem to tally with something a neighbour told me last year, which is that the new manager (Phil Willmott) has been transferred from the store at Nine Elms/ Vauxhall, which was closed for redevelopment into a mixed use site, with lots of tower blocks and a new Sainsburys with underground parking, with the aim of instigating a similar operation here at Bell Green.

From this:

To this:

Is it possible the site is being run down and seeing a lack of investment because this is the plan for the site and the objective for the management team, rather than a store loved and used by the local community? You could fit a lot of tower blocks on that car park and petrol station (which is also frequently closed late evenings, despite being ‘24 hours’). I would imagine removing the gasholders could only improve the views for residents and perhaps the site over the road where B & Q etc… is based could follow.

Of course, it may be that they are just rubbish at operating their own shops and can’t be bothered.


Interesting theory. Short-term manipulation of profitability is commonplace when it comes to mergers and acquisitions. In one of my former employers it was painfully obvious to everyone.


I visited the New Cross Sainsbury’s this morning, purely as I was in the area. I’ve got to say it is really nice in there. Much much better than the last time I went in there, (which was a few years ago) the Cafe has been refurbed completely, the toilets are spotless & smell nice. It just looked as though it had had a complete makeover.
Where my daughter lives in Crayford they have a new Sainsbury’s, complete with an upper tier & the Sainsbury’s at Vauxhall is the same, so maybe they will do the same to the Savacentre, (fingers crossed)


Hanlon’s Razor would suggest it is more likely to be incompetence than malice. Of course, once the store is an underperforming mess, other management may come to the conclusion that redevelopment is the best option - even if it’s not!

Any idea add to why the previous store manager left?