Is this Britain’s cheapest petrol station? Owner slashes prices to just £1.09 a litre ‘because drivers are cheated by supermarket fuel prices’
- Garage in Redditch, Worcestershire, is selling petrol for just £1.09 a litre
- Hundreds of drivers queued for up to half an hour to fill up at cheap pumps
- Owner says he decided to act because supermarket prices were too high
- Velautham Sarveswaran has also slashed the cost of diesel to £1.16 a litre
- Despite the low cost, he still makes 3.5p profit on every litre sold
- Fuel prices are falling after the cost of crude oil dropped by 40 per cent
Hundreds of motorists are flocking to a garage selling what could be the cheapest petrol in Britain – at just £1.09 a litre.
The pumps at the Harvest petrol station forecourt in Redditch, Worcestershire, ran dry three times in the past two weeks after its manager slashed fuel prices.
Drivers have faced 30-minute queues to fill up their tanks after Velautham Sarveswaran, 52, cut the cost of fuel at his petrol station because he was fed up of supermarkets ‘cheating’ customers with rip-off prices.
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Velautham Sarveswaran has slashed the price of petrol at his garage in Redditch, Worcestershire, to just £1.09 a litre – potentially making the station the cheapest in Britain
The petrol station manager has also cut the price of diesel – down to £1.16 a litre – because he was fed up of supermarkets ‘cheating’ customers with rip-off prices
Mr Sarveswaran has also seen motorists arrive in their droves at his two other petrol stations in Maypole, Birmingham, and Walsall, where the cost of filling up has also been knocked down.
The petrol station boss, who charges £1.16 a litre for diesel, said he decided to act because of high prices at supermarket forecourts.
Despite the low costs, the independent garage which sells Harvest Energy fuel still makes a 3.5p profit on every litre it sells.
He said: ‘It’s a great feeling because we are passing on the benefits of the price cuts to the customers. They are praising us and they are happy.
‘Normally we have local customers but more people are stopping here after seeing the prices.
‘I believe we are the cheapest in the country, people have told me they can’t find it cheaper anywhere else.
‘Our Walsall branch is busy and in Redditch the forecourt is small and there’s been queues of motorists. It ran out of petrol about two or three times over the past two weeks.
‘One customer told me he saved nearly £15 filling up his Range Rover – that’s a lot of money.’
A graph showing the average price of a litre of unleaded petrol since 2010. Prices have been rising but began to fall from the beginning of 2014
The average price of a litre of diesel has also followed a similar pattern over the past four years, with the cost decreasing in 2014
The big four supermarkets all announced a 2p fuel cut last week following a huge drop in the price of crude oil.
The price of a barrel of crude oil has dropped by 40 per cent in the past six months, with some retailers now passing the saving on to customers.
But Mr Sarveswaran said supermarkets should have seen the reduction in costs coming and acted sooner.
‘The supermarkets should have done it quicker. They don’t put the prices down straight away, they make a fortune,’ he said.
‘Where I live, Sainsbury’s is still 115p. It makes me angry and then suddenly they wake up and cut their prices by 2p. They are cheating people.’
Father-of-one Mr Sarveswaran has managed the petrol stations with his wife Ananthi, 50, since 2002.
The former civil engineer, who lives in Dorridge, West Midlands, said he plans to slash prices by another 2p next week.
He added: ‘We need to make a profit and we set a profit margin and what we have been doing over the last year is cut down prices straight away when oil prices drop.
‘Our sales have gone up by 25 to 30 per cent since we brought it down to 112p last week.
‘I can see us bringing it down and knocking another 2p off next Monday.’
The pumps at the Harvest petrol station forecourt have run dry three times in the past two weeks as customers flock to fill up their vehicles
The price of a barrel of crude oil has dropped by 40 per cent in the past six months, with some retailers now passing the saving on to customers
Customer Alan Nicks, 44, drove six miles from his home in Bromsgrove, Worcestershire, to fill up his Ford Focus at the petrol station this morning.
He said: ‘My cousin told me about the price and I didn’t believe it when I was first told. I had to come and see it for myself.
‘It was worth a bit of drive out and a 30-minute wait queuing. It’s an absolute bargain.’
Average petrol prices have plunged in the last month from 123.1p a litre in mid-November to 116.8p in mid-December.
The price of diesel has also nosedived from 127.5p a litre to 122.5p in the same time.
Yesterday experts said the fuel price war could see petrol cost less than £1 a litre in the new year -the lowest level since May 2009.
RAC spokesman Simon Williams said: ‘What’s currently happening at the pumps with falling fuel prices is something many motorists will not remember seeing before.
‘The prospect of petrol going below £1 a litre in the new year is incredible, particularly when prices at the beginning of 2014 seemed to be heading ever upwards.’