On Lodge Lane: The L8 Superstore

A post from just before Christmas 2014. Now in May 2015 comes the news that Lodge Lane’s L8 Superstore has won the BBC’s Food and Farming Awards for 2015 as ‘Food Retailer of the Year.’ The BBC used these photos of mine in a film they put together for the Awards show. Well done L8!CD3MakmXIAMHAJy.jpg-large
Shopping01As the joint and malign forces of red top media and multinational capital try to force people to surrender even more money they haven’t got, by spending it on Christmas trash in town on their so-called ‘Panic Saturday’ we’re in Lodge Lane in Liverpool 8. Doing the kind of shopping everybody actually needs to do, in one of Liverpool’s most magnificent superstores.

In fact that's what it's called.

In fact that’s what it’s called.

The L8 Superstore is part of the ‘Manchester Superstore’ group – implying they’ve more of these in a nearby town (in fact there are several throughout the North).

For richness

For richness

And for curiosity

And for curiosity

Few shopping experiences in Liverpool can rival it.

Few shopping experiences in Liverpool can rival it.

There is an inside to the shop, where we’ll go in a bit, but it’s the luxurious display of fruit and vegetables outside that draws the eye and gets the camera out of my bag.

Sarah's in her element of course. Shopping heaven.

Sarah’s in her element of course. Shopping heaven.

We're here with our friend Bren.

We’re here with our friend Bren.

Some of what they’re buying will be eaten on Sarah’s allotment where they do as much cooking as gardening during these winter months.

That's not some new faux-chic catwalk style he's modelling. He's in the middle of painting his flat, just down the road from here.

That’s not some new faux-chic catwalk style he’s modelling there by the way. He’s in the middle of painting his flat, just down the road from here.

So this is Bren’s local greengrocer’s.

Selling everything you can imagine. And a few where you have to ask.

Selling everything you can imagine. And a few where you have to ask.

So busy that they're constantly restocking around you.

So busy that they’re constantly restocking around you.

Simply beautiful in the Lodge Lane winter sun.

Simply beautiful in the Lodge Lane winter sun.

Even while we're here the displays are being expanded around the corner.

Even while we’re here the displays are being expanded around the corner.

New life in a street that long seemed on its last legs.

New life in a street that long seemed on its last legs.

Before the 1981 riots Lodge Lane was a busy high street full of pubs, shops and even Liverpool’s first ‘health food’ store ‘The Dancing Cat’. But after the riots the street suffered years of desolation as streets around here and nearby Granby were demolished and so many people were moved out of the area.

But now there are new people here and new life has returned. Let's look inside the shop.

But now there are new people here and new life has returned. Let’s look inside the shop.

Where the theme of plenty

Where the theme of plenty

And variety of choice

And variety of choice

Continues all along the shelves.

Continues all along the shelves.

Entrancing our two featured shoppers.

Entrancing our two featured shoppers.

Even the pots and pans reflect the colours from outside the shop.

Even the pots and pans reflect the colours from outside the shop.

So there’s no ‘Panic Saturday’ here, or money being thrown at stuff no one needs. Just the sensual delight of being alive in a place that looks and smells and feels so full of life and the living of it.

There are frozen fish nearly bigger than the fridge they're in.

There are frozen fish nearly bigger than the fridge they’re in.

And just opposite

And just opposite

A busy Halal Butcher's counter.

A busy Halal butcher’s counter.

So now you know, if you didn't before.

So now you know about the L8 Superstore, if you didn’t before.

This isn’t even the only shop like this around here. There’s a similar emporium operating out of the former Tesco and Kwiksave store on the corner of Lodge Lane and Smithdown.

They add immensely to the urban richness of living around here. And are yet another reason not to do the whole weekly shop in some faceless corporate ‘superstore’.

One more find in the real 'superstore' before we go.

One more find in the real ‘Superstore’ before we go.

And our total spend? £25 for vegetables, fruit and other food for the ‘holidays’. Including that whole tray of lemons Sarah’s clutching there for making lemon curd. Good value, a deep pleasure. And no panic whatsoever.

So this week, as the present buying subsides but you dread the prospect of jostling for food in you know where, come to Lodge Lane instead.

This is not an advert, of course, it’s just obviously better. And see a bit more of Lodge Lane during our 27 bus adventure.

13 thoughts on “On Lodge Lane: The L8 Superstore

  1. lindsay53

    Another lovely post! Aren’t these sorts of shops just a delight? Not only can you get the usual stuff but you learn about new stuff and what to do with it. It’s also a feast for the eyes too with so much colour and choice. How great to support local businesses that have set up in an area where facilities are much needed. Hope they go from strength to strength!

    Reply
  2. Gerry

    The Medjool dates grown by Palestinian farmers that I bought there the other week are superb – the best I’ve ever tasted, and helps support a good cause.

    Reply
  3. Cathy Alderson

    Ah, happy memories! Before I was married, I lived in a flat in Hartington Rd, opposite Croxteth Grove, up which I would walk to Lodge Lane to do my shopping.
    I loved Dancing Cat, where I would buy the ingredients to copy some of Paddy’s delicious food that I liked in the Everyman Bistro (mine was never as good!)
    Great to see that the Manchester Superstore displays the prices in £s per pound, as well as £s per kilo.
    A great post, as always, Ronnie, full of interest. Thanks.

    Reply
  4. Dave

    Tesco and sainsbury the landlord buying up everything. Putting absolutely nothing back into the locals pockets. All staff working for food reward. All foods full of the sugar and salt to keep the people well addicted. Food addiction experts thats what the supermarkets are experts at. A paracite that has spread across Briton. Stopping people from having wealth in their areas. We dont live in a decenthuman society…its just upperclass rule.

    Reply
      1. dan

        Yes my point exactly. People deserve what wealth the areas have. Supermarkets like tesco are now diversifying into the local tradesman area…DOING EVERYONE OUT OF WORK. the evidence can be seen across this country. Best thing locals can do is boycott them and leave um rotting in the shit they produce. Just like the shit state this country is in. What companies want to invest in an area where the parasite supermarket run by upper-class sucking every area dry for unnecessary greed. The best thing locals can do is start up your own shops and bring local money back to the locals who really need it. Undo all that TV brainwashing commercials and reclaim what’s rightfully your areas money. All theses supermarkets put in their shop titles is YOUR tescos or your local sainbuys….paracites that the are.

  5. dan

    Tesco & Sainsbuys plague sweep across Briton. Taking all money out of every Village, Town, City.
    Supermarket staff working for food reward. Supermarkets load every food with that ingredient SUGAR.Salt the second. Their best kept secret, sugar addiction for the kids & sugar addiction for the adults. Obesity, Alzheimer’s disease. Plenty of evidence on youtube about sugar.

    What do they put back into the locals pockets, NOTHING. Theses places are run by the upper class to keep them in luxury. Mean-while the working class are trying to make ends meet. What Government would allow such mass taking over of this Briton? A corrupt one, that’s the truth. Local business not taken out of business by the business killer that is the supermarket.

    I overheard a conversation about this racket & the sugar addiction years ago. Trouble is all the general public take it at face value that the TV & Media tell you the truth. Monkey see monkey do…keep watching the TV adverts they are by professional marketers & they employ professional actors to get this crap populated.

    Reply

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