Sunday 1 December 2013 11:39 pm

Maidstone Mums: The new Holy Grail

RONNY Gottschlich, managing director of Lidl UK, described the discount retailer’s growing number of core shoppers as Maidstone Mums. “The Maidstone Mum is someone who probably previously would have thought, I can’t be seen in a Lidl store. Those Maidstone Mums are no longer afraid of being seen in a Lidl store,” he said. But how accurate is Gottschlich’s claim? According to the women of Maidstone in Kent, he’s spot on the mark. “To start with I was a little uncomfortable – I always thought it was cheap and cheerful, and up until then I had always shopped in Waitrose and Sainsbury’s,” said Helen Swan, former president of the Farleighs Womens Institute (WI) in Maidstone. “But I found I would keep bumping into people I knew, I started thinking… everyone I know shops here.” Swan says Lidl is an increasingly popular destination for the so-called Maidstone Mums. “I shop in Lidl regularly, my daughter shops there, and lots of fellow WI members shop there too.”