Northern Ireland SPAR retailer celebrates 35 years of serving local communities

July 26, 2023 IN THE CATEGORY: People

  • Robert Caughey, Regional Sales Manager at Henderson Group, presenting Peter McBride with an anniversary plaque, alongside Peter’s daughter, Ava McBride.

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Peter McBride, owner of 16 SPAR stores across counties Tyrone, Fermanagh, and Armagh in Northern Ireland, is celebrating 35 years in business. He attributes his success to the loyalty of the communities he serves. Throughout these years, Peter McBride's stores have provided 550 jobs, benefiting local residents and surrounding areas.

Since 1988, Peter McBride has partnered with the Henderson Group, the license partner of SPAR UK growing the SPAR brand in Northern Ireland. He shares his passion and experience in his role as Vice Chair of the local SPAR Guild, representing independent SPAR retailers. In this position, he also participates in the SPAR UK Guild Committee, whereby retailers represent each region of the country. In addition, Peter represents UK retailers internationally since his appointment to the International SPAR Guild of retailers in 2019.

Reflecting on his journey, Peter shared, “It would be difficult to name one highlight from the past 35 years, but anyone who knows me understands how important community is to me and my family. Running a local store means you are the hub of the local community, and the teams I work with are the backbone of the Group’s successful 35 years in business.”

Giving back to the community

One key aspect that defines the McBride Group is their commitment to giving back to the communities they serve. All their stores actively support local community groups and charities, sponsor local sports teams, organise litter pick-ups, offer home deliveries for vulnerable individuals, donate to food banks, and under a national campaign have installed defibrillators in several locations.

Over the past 12 months alone, the Group has donated over £41,500 to various local initiatives. Furthermore, through partnerships with customers, they have raised an astounding £133,730 for SPAR Northern Ireland’s charity partner, Marie Curie NI, since 2017. At SPAR NI’s Blooming Great Summer event, they raised £10,000 for the charity, showcasing their ongoing dedication to making a positive impact.

35-year celebrations

In recognition of his outstanding contributions to the economy and the community in Co. Tyrone, Peter McBride was recently awarded an MBE by King Charles III in the New Year Honours List of 2023.

Peter has made significant investments of £3.5 million to expand the McBride Group, adding three new stores: SPAR Glenwood in Irvinestown, and Strabane stores SPAR Castletown and SPAR Urney Road. An additional £1.5 million went into refurbishing and extending two existing stores, ensuring top-quality products and services for shoppers at each location.

All stores in the McBride Group held a special £35 voucher giveaway each day of Peter ’s anniversary week. In SPAR Mullaghmore, the first store that the group opened 35 years ago, shoppers had the chance to win exciting prizes.

Martin Agnew, Joint Managing Director of the Henderson Group, commented, “At the heart of all communities in which his stores operate, Peter, alongside his store teams, dedicate their time and efforts, not only to their shoppers, but also to fundraising significant sums of money for local charities and giving back to the community in any way they can. We wish to extend a huge congratulations to Peter on this milestone anniversary and his successes over the past 35 years.”

Future plans

Far from being content with past achievements, Peter has ambitious plans for further investments in his store estate. He envisions full knock-down and rebuild projects, store extensions, and complete refurbishments to maintain the highest standards and continually meet customers’ evolving needs.

Source: SPAR in Northern Ireland

Read more about SPAR UK.


The UK became a SPAR member in 1956 when SPAR International granted the SPAR licence to a group of independent wholesalers. As a result, there are now five regional partners in the UK. A central office in London provides national marketing and buying services for the group.

SPAR has led the highly competitive convenience market in the UK for many years. Always innovative, the five regional partners continue to grow the brand. SPAR UK comprises independently owned licensed retailers and company-owned stores. These include forecourts, airports, train stations, city centres, and local neighbourhood stores.