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Article and photographs by Paul Wright
Asda Petrol Station
Opening Day
Groundworks begin

First of the metal framing in position
Construction under way
Construction under way
Fuelk arrives
Fuel arrives
Contractors moved on to start the groundwork etc for Asda's fuel site on the week beginning 22nd August, 2016, for several days concrete and earth was moved around the site to level the ground off.

This was formerly the site of the Bridge Service Station that closed earlier in the summer of 2016.

And then on Wednesday 7th September the metal prefabricated contractors’ offices were moved into position.

Even more excavating was still taking place in to the later part of September, with the summer weather still holding fast, with extremely high temperatures in the low 30's C.

The steelwork was started on Thursday 22nd September, at the time of taking the shots the weather was starting to drizzle, no surprise there, as John Thurston's funfair was in town for its annual week on Spencer Park.

Being only a fairly modest structure the steel erection took about one day, and the walls were clad in a couple of days by the Friday 7th October, 2016.

The big day began at 08.00 BST on Thursday 13th October, 2016, when the two massive fuel tanks arrived on site. The first one was swung in to place by 10.00, with a dry bright morning that was hitting 13C, and the second orange painted tank was laying alongside the first by 12 noon.

Seeing this spectacle did remind me about the Beatles animated colour film from 1968, which took its inspiration from their chart topping novelty record called "Yellow submarine", sung by drummer Ringo Starr; this reached No 1/66 for 4 weeks in the charts.

On the following day the deep trench containing the fuel tanks was back-filled with gravel up to the tops of the tanks. The next part of the work was connecting the pump positions up by flexible hoses through ducting channels underground.

As the week of the 7th November came to an end we could see the forecourt area was taking shape with the concrete being laid, and on Wednesday 16th the main canopy was hauled in to position by two giant cranes.

Over the week commencing 21st November, 2016, the tarmac gangs came on to site to lay the black stuff.

Immediately before the new fuel station came on line, the other three operators in town were selling their fuel at the following prices. 

Croyland appeared to be fractionally the cheapest in town, they were selling unleaded petrol at £114.7 per litre, and diesel at £116.7 per litre.

At both Texaco and Waitrose it was unleaded at £114.9 and £116.9 for the same amount of diesel respectively.

When the opening day finally arrived on Wednesday 7th December, 2016, it was blessed with perfect weather conditions, that saw temperatures unseasonably warm at 13C.

As expected the price of fuel was a lot lower than the three outlets in opposition, with both unleaded petrol and diesel both available for £109.7 per litre.

The demand was steady, and no traffic hold ups were experienced, much to the relief of local drivers.

It will be interesting to see just what the effect on fuel prices will be after the opening of the Asda site?

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