Waitrose joined the John Lewis Partnership in 1937 as a chain of 10 specialist food shops, with the first supermarket opening in 1955. Over the years our Partners have stayed true to Waitrose's beginnings, combining the convenience of a supermarket with the expertise and service of a specialist shop. We have worked with producers and growers, pioneering local and organic products and championing sustainable sourcing, to build a network of over 300 shops known for the freshness, quality, safety and provenance of the food we sell.

Jacqueline Lippett with Carole Lord
Jacqueline Lippett with Carole Lord at Waitrose Bracknell

Waitrose was named Supermarket of the Year at the Retail Industry Awards in September 2014 having been named Best Supermarket at the Which? Awards 2014. Waitrose was also recognised in Verdict's Customer Satisfaction Awards 2014 as Best Food & Grocery Retailer.

At the 2014 International Cheese Awards in Nantwich - the world's largest and most prestigious cheese show - Waitrose was named Supreme Retailer with 22 gold medals.

Waitrose was awarded Favourite Supermarket in the prestigious Good Housekeeping Awards 2013, for the sixth year running.

Waitrose holds a Royal Warrant as Grocers and Wine & Spirit Merchants to Her Majesty The Queen. Waitrose was the first supermarket to be granted a Royal Warrant by Her Majesty The Queen in 2002 and was also awarded a Royal Warrant by The Prince of Wales in 2010.

Waitrose is the official Team Sponsor of England Cricket. To find out more viist the Waitrose.com website.

The provenance and traceability of the food we sell is vitally important. Our buyers are experts in their own fields and spend much of their time with farmers, growers and suppliers, building relationships based on trust and respect with the people who produce the high quality food and unusual ingredients our customers eat.

At the Soil Association Organic Food Awards, held in September 2013, Waitrose was named Best Supermarket. Judges praised Waitrose's 'holistic approach to providing a wide range of organic choices for their customers while fully supporting British and organic farming'.

At the 2014 Marine Stewardship Council's Seafood Sustainability Awards, Waitrose was named Best MSC Certified Fish Counter, for offering the broadest range of MSC-certified options of any UK supermarket. Leading animal welfare charity Compassion in World Farming presented Waitrose with the Good Pig Award in September 2012 for the use of high welfare pork.

Waitrose's 'Price Commitment' is our promise to give customers quality food that is honestly priced and represents excellent value.

Waitrose's pioneering approach to sourcing fresh fruit and vegetables from the regions it trades in and clearly labelling them as such has won a Gold Award from The Grocer magazine.

At Waitrose, we have more Masters of Wine than any other supermarket, and all our wines go through a rigorous quality control and tasting process. We also have wine specialists in our branches offering expert advice and have an illustrious track record for achievements in wine retailing. In 2015 Waitrose won five awards at the Drinks Retailing Awards, including Supermarket of the Year, Multiple Cider Retailer of the Year, Multiple Spirits Retailer of the Year, Multiple Champagne Retailer of the Year and Online Drinks Retailer of the Year. Wines can be purchased online at Waitrose Cellar (www.waitrosecellar.com).

The Waitrose cookery school above the Finchley Road (John Barnes) branch in north London comprises a theatre, teaching area, dining area, bar and kitchen. The school's varied timetable offers consumers a choice of cookery classes, including sessions focusing on particular cuisine styles such as Indian or Italian, to more skills-based sessions such as butchery, baking and knife-skills. Courses cover how to get the best out of cheese, meat and fish as well as all that is in season. Waitrose also uses the school to train its branch Specialists. A further cookery school located at Waitrose Food & Home, Salisbury offers best-selling courses from the London school.

As the result of a franchise partnership food shops have been opened at 29 Welcome Break motorway service areas.

Waitrose was the first company to sign up to the Scottish Retailers' Charter, launched in June 2009, which aims to create a 'responsible approach' between retailers and suppliers.

In March 2010, Heston Blumenthal joined forces with Waitrose as a food ambassador for the brand. He appears in TV, press and online ads, sharing his expertise and showcasing recipes while championing individual ingredients from Waitrose. The advertisements are available to view along with video recipes and other video content at the Waitrose YouTube channel Waitrose YouTube channel  (www.youtube.com/waitrose). A Heston from Waitrose range launched in 2010 and has been expanded further. It features a wide range of products including pies, stocks, dressings, burgers, sausages, soups, ice cream, and the Heston from Waitrose Hidden Orange Christmas pudding which was a sell-out success for Christmas 2010 and 2011.

In February 2014, Waitrose announced plans to work with the great British talkshow host, Sir Michael Parkinson. 'Parky', as he is known more famously to viewers, will host a series of shows in which he will interview high profile celebrities and chefs. The talkshows will be exclusively broadcast on Waitrose TV. Sir Michael Parkinson will also contribute to Waitrose Weekend - a free weekly newspaper covering all aspects of food, drink, entertainment, news and sport. Waitrose Weekend is available in all Waitrose branches every Thursday.

To find your nearest Waitrose branch go to the Waitrose website (www.waitrose.com).

Shopping online

Waitrose online shopping service continues to grow and operates from 168 branches across the country. The service is designed to have all the benefits of your local Waitrose delivered to your door - free of charge. Waitrose was the first UK supermarket to abolish all delivery charges for online orders. Waitrose have also introduced temperature controlled lockers for customers to be able to collect their orders at two tube stations in London and at Southampton Parkway station. For more details about delivery and collection options visit the Waitrose website (www.waitrose.com).

Waitrose is also a long-term supplier to online retailer Ocado, which has sold our groceries to customers across the country since 2002.  In 2010 we extended this successful partnership with a 10-year sourcing agreement, which will run until September 2020.

John Lewis's free Click & collect service is now available in the majority of Waitrose branches as well as all John Lewis stores, more than 350 stores in total. The service allows customers to buy online at johnlewis.com and pick up their purchases after 2pm the next day in their nominated branch.