Behold the UK’s First ‘Automated Shop’

“Having spent more than two years designing the prototype, he now hopes that similar machines can be rolled out nationally.”

No, just no…This might be brilliant for a remote village out in the sticks, but I wouldn’t put much odds on its fate if it were in a busier and less rural environment. Besides, most places now have 24-hour stores.

And what if people decide it is more expedient to have their entire weekly shop handed to them on a mechanical platter. Don’t pooh-pooh this…the world is full of lazy twats. I’d venture to say things won’t be quite so ‘speedy’ after that.

Don’t get me wrong. I think it’s an awesome invention, and wouldn’t mind the convenience of this contraption nearby, along with some of the weird and wonderful vending machines from other parts of the world (though perhaps not so much the used schoolgirl underwear dispenser). And every home, especially the ones I visit, ought to have this one for Nutella Ice-Cream.


But it’s a such a shame I live in the real world…There is a phonebox just down the road that gets regularly defaced, and this isn’t even a particularly rough part of town. Not five minutes after each attempt to repair the damage and it’s all spraypaint, broken glass, and door looking more hungover than last night’s occupant (that’s if we can find it…the door, I mean).

“Change is inevitable – except from a vending machine.”
– Robert C Gallagher

In a disagreement over a tin of beans or tub of gravy granules, I fear the vending machine would come off worse…Heaven forfend if an egg so much as looks a little more off-white than it should. Chances for survival would be a lot higher if the ‘Speedy Shop’ came with a built-in defense arsenal (highly recommend a flame-thrower of some sort), or artificial intelligence like the one on Red Dwarf.

Who knows? The resulting drama might earn the vending machine a starring role in 999: What’s Your Emergency? or similar. Just picture it: Blackpool could be in the limelight again…

Nevermind, let’s not go there.


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