Coverage of Cupar Alworths opening raises a retail laugh
Alworths in Cupar opened today, taking over the premises that were latterly Pound-Mart and, before that, Woolworths.
The fledgling chain’s first foray into Fife – and Scotland – ahead of another store opening, in Forfar, on Friday, has unsurprisingly prompted some decent media coverage, including from BBC News and STV.
While the BBC accompanied its piece with a well-chosen photo of a (generic) Alworths store interior, STV’s choice of shot – under the headline “Hundreds flock to Cupar Alworths opening” – gave me my biggest retail-related laugh in a while.
The photo depicts a crowd of people, about twelve abreast, stretching as far as the eye can see. On this basis, you could be forgiven for thinking: “Wow, Alworths in Cupar – a little town of about 8,500 people – really is popular, isn’t it?” By the looks of it, most of those 8,500 were there at the opening!
However, having subjected the photo to further scrutiny, I began to smell a rat. For one thing, it’s clear that the streets in Cupar’s attractive and historic centre – never mind the pavements – are barely wide enough to accommodate so many people at once. Equally, any sign of an actual Alworths store in the photo is conspicuous by its absence.
Rather, I suspect that someone at STV has searched their stock photo library with the keyword “crowd” and used the first thing that showed up, however laughably unsuitable that might be. Is it me, or is that rather lazy journalism?
After all, if STV had just done a Google Image Search for ‘Alworths’, I’d have been happy to share a shot from the Soult’s Retail View archive with them. Still lazy, admittedly, and undoubtedly less amusing… but surely a more appropriate way of illustrating the story!