About us


In 1956 SPAR was introduced into mainland UK. William Agnew had become convinced that small independent wholesalers and retailers would fail unless they could compete with the growth of multiple retailing.

William Agnew decided on SPAR and became the first Group Wholesaler in Northern Ireland, when he joined SPAR in 1961.

In common with all SPAR wholesalers, Henderson’s grew and in 1972 became the first wholesaler in the province to distribute fresh produce. This growth required further expansion which was not possible at the Ravenhill site. In 1974 John Henderson Ltd moved to its current site at Mallusk, Newtownabbey. The land was cleared and a custom built 80,000 sq ft warehouse commenced in 1972 and completed in 1974. It remains the Group’s Head Office and depot today.

Today there is over 300 SPAR stores located around Northern Ireland. As a family-run business, which operates over 80 company-owned sites, Henderson Group understands the issues and concerns of independent retailers.

SPAR is an international brand in 35 countries around the world and has been at the forecourt of convenience retailing in Northern Ireland for over 50 years. 

Through close collaboration and strong relationships between each country, SPAR NI retailers can benefit from the learning’s and experience gained from across the globe.