thecentre:mk Shopping Centre : When Good Customer Service Can Make a Real Difference

Rachel Cole from Bravissimo is the latest winner of thecentre:mk’s Serious Service Award for March. Rachel provided excellent service to a wheelchair bound customer which has changed their view on life. Rachel also donated her monthly prize, a Coca-Cola fridge, to a charity raffle for the Moon Walk raising money to help fight breast cancer.

Milton Keynes, United Kingdom, April 17, 2009 --( Rachel earned the nomination from Mrs Parkinson in Northamptonshire for exceptional customer service. In 2007 Mrs Parkinson needed two discs removing from her backbone, which left her 95% dependent on her wheelchair, since then her confidence has plummeted and she had put her studies to become a lawyer on hold. Low on confidence Mrs Parkinson’s husband took her to Bravissimo to redeem a voucher she had been given in 2008.

“I really didn’t know what I was expecting when I went to the store,” commented Mrs Parkinson. “Previously, people had spoken down to me whilst I was in the wheelchair, knocking in to me even raising their voices so I could understand! As a result after 18 months my confidence was at such a low ebb that I was very nervous doing anything at all. However, Rachel changed all that. She treated me completely normally, no airs and graces and crucially she listened to me.

Rachel was a revelation, she completely changed the way I felt about myself. Because of her attitude and friendliness I’ve got a second wind, even my children have commented the new me. Customer service is so undervalued and very few people seem to say thank you anymore, well, I just wanted to say thank you and she really did make a difference.”

The Serious Service Awards aim to encourage customer feedback and highlight great customer service examples from retailing staff.

“I’m really thrilled that Mrs Parkinson remembered me because I remembered her,” commented Rachel. “During the personal fitting sessions, I have at least 20 minutes with a client when they’re at their most vulnerable talking about a product which is so influential in their lives. To make a connection is wonderful and so key; it’s the reason why I’m still working in this industry. So much of what we do is about educating the customer; it’s not just about selling products.”

Rachel is now entered into the Annual Serious Service award and will be joined by the other monthly winners.


More about thecentre:mk
Media information: Mike Graham, PR Officer on 01908 398132 or or the Marketing Team on 01908 678641 or visit

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thecentre:mk is a regional shopping centre situated in the heart of Milton Keynes. With over 240 stores, cafes and restaurants all under one roof, it is anchored by John Lewis, House of Fraser, Marks & Spencer and Next. As the premier shopping destination in the region between London and Birmingham, Cambridge and Oxford, thecentre:mk enjoys around 30 million visits every year and is unrivalled in its customer service. Included in the overall proposition are civic spaces and events venues; City Square, Queens Court and Middleton Hall which offer a varied programme of free events throughout the year, including bridal shows, fashion events, motor shows and the award winning Christmas display.

The CACI Retail Footprint Report 2005 ranked thecentre:mk as the Number One Town Centre Shopping Centre in the UK.
the centre:mk
Mike Chambers
0870 890 2530
PR & Communications Officer