JET Brentford Service Station makes ‘child’s play’ of community engagement
JET Brentford Service Station is located on an A road at the end of Brentford’s high street in Middlesex. Business Development Manager, Manoj Agnihotri, isn’t afraid to try anything new to boost forecourt footfall and recently took a gamble when he decided to close the forecourt for an hour to welcome children and teachers from a local nursery for a tour of the site and fun activities.
When he heard that the nursery was taking children to visit local businesses including a dentist, an opticians and a convenience store to find out about what goes on behind the scenes, he invited them to the JET forecourt!
For health and safety reasons*, the site was closed to the public for the duration of the visit while 25 children aged between three and five and their five teachers descended on the site one sunny Tuesday morning in late June. As well as learning how a tanker delivers fuel, the children got to see inside one of the fuel tanks as Manoj arranged for it to be opened. The children also had a go at cleaning cars using the site’s hand car wash and had the chance to sit in an Aston Martin. The visit ended with a snack and each child received a JET torch to take home as a memento from the visit.
Manoj comments: “Some people might think I’m mad closing the site on a busy Tuesday morning, but I don’t think you can put a value on creating community goodwill. The children and teachers (and our staff) had a whale of a time and we’ve had so much positive feedback from the nursery, parents and other local businesses, with everyone saying what a great thing we’re doing for the kids. Many parents said that they’ll definitely be using our petrol station in the future!
“For any dealers looking to boost their site’s reputation, I’d say don’t be afraid of reaching out and engaging with your local community. There’s really nothing to lose and a lot to be gained!”
Mrs. S. Soin, owner and manager of the Little Munchkins Montessori Nursery, adds: “We always look for new ideas and experiences that are not only fun for the children, but also a great educational learning opportunity to grow, learn and develop. We’re extremely grateful to the Agnihotri family for their kind hospitality and making this experience possible. The children, staff and parents really enjoyed finding out more about what goes on behind the scenes at a service station.”
* All the necessary safety measures were in place to ensure the safety of the children at all times.