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Talk to B&Q about their products and your experiences in store – £150 giftcard to be won NOW CLOSED

(107 Posts)
KatieBMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 27-Aug-13 14:01:07

As you may have seen recently, we're working with B&Q, who so far have helped lots of MNers revamp their unloved rooms and gardens. B&Q are very keen to get more of you trying out their products/services and going in-store to check out what they have to offer. You can also find loads of information and advice on revamping your rooms and gardens on the B&Q pages on MN.

- Have you visited a B&Q store recently? If so, which one did you visit and what did you think? If you haven't visited recently, what would convince you to go along?

- If you have been to a B&Q store recently, were the staff helpful? What did you think about the product range and presentation?

- What, if anything, do you think B&Q could do better to get more people in store?

- Have you or your DCs attended a You Can Do It workshop or Kids Can Do It class? If so, which one did you attend and what did you think of it?

- If you haven't been to a B&Q store recently, after looking at the B&Q pages on MN, which pieces of advice or info (if any) did you find the most useful? Has any of the info you've seen made you feel more confident about taking on a redecoration project of your own?

Everyone who posts a comment here will be entered into a prize draw to win a £150 B&Q giftcard.

Please note that any comments you post here may appear on the B&Q pages on Mumsnet and potentially elsewhere.

Thanks and good luck,

MNHQ

Rooners Thu 29-Aug-13 08:39:29

Just another note about the furnishing bit. Does anyone use it? I never see anyone buying furnishings there.

From what I can tell, and I do like to buy this sort of thing - the cushions/curtains and so on are all really mainstream, very dull in that sense - but then it's a DIY shop and I don't go there to buy cushions.

I think you would be better avoiding homeware in favour of the stuff you're very good at ie DIY materials. I do often find stuff I need, obscure stuff like 5mm steel rods and so on that you can't get anywhere else. But trying to find the stuff you saw in the shop online, conversely is impossible.

Tieing up the online/instore availability would be a massive achievement and very encouraging - you don't want to get there after a half hour drive and find something isn't actually in stock, or get home, find you need some more tiles and not be able to find them on the website.

Everytime i have been to my local B&Q in Shirley, i have found it hard to find any staff to help me then at the check out i always seem to spend ages waiting whist the cashiers finish their conversations.

noobieteacher Thu 29-Aug-13 11:26:45

I've been to many different branches in London and Norwich, and found a huge difference in levels of service. Enfield is great with excellent stock and helpful staff, Norwich Hall Road is atrocious, with poor boxes of broken stock everywhere, no staff when you need them but plenty of people ready to try and sell you a complete kitchen or bathroom design.

The DIY checkout systems are completely absurd because you usually need help from staff anyway.

Oh and I once made the mistake of consulting a kitchen designer. He was a middle aged man who really seemed to know nothing about how people use a kitchen these days. Barmy.

But as I said, Enfield branch is great and is the best DIY store around.

AGnu Thu 29-Aug-13 11:42:43

I'm a little bit in love with B&Q at the moment! I'm a club member & follow them on Twitter to keep an eye on the best deals. We've been into the one in Filton quite a bit recently as we have several projects on the go. They've always been helpful & friendly, although they didn't have the appropriate bases to mix all the eggshell paint we wanted but we compromised with satinwood. The paint is ridiculously expensive but we did manage to get it on the dulux 3 for 2 deal so I wasn't too bothered!

I've not tried any of their workshops yet but I like the idea, it's just that I've not needed to learn any of the skills they teach yet! A good gardening course with tips on growing your own etc would be handy, especially organic gardening or how to deal with pests. Or how to remove 1930s plaster & redo it nicely on a budget... wink It's a bit tricky at the moment though as we have 2 under 2! Can't wait for them to be old enough to do the kids classes.

My main gripe with B&Q is the website. I find it really difficult to navigate & can never seem to find products in what seems like the obvious category but they show up if I search specifically - not very helpful if I'm trying to see what the similar options are. Searching for paint is really frustrating.

Ruby6918 Thu 29-Aug-13 12:26:18

i love gardening and the selection of plants is brilliant and the special offers, im quite thin so when i bought top soil at the b&q on boucher road belfast a very helpful member of staff helped to put it into my boot which was brilliant, i always find the staff really helpful at boucher road, im a member of the b&q club but would like a proper card instead of a membership number as i often forget to bring it with me when im out and so miss out on discounts, we need cards for members

noobieteacher Thu 29-Aug-13 12:39:40

I'm not going to win this am I - because I have to say the website is terrible!

And while I'm being negative - quite often you try to sell plants that have fungus or are dry. Sorry to be picky.

StillNoFuckingEyeDeer Thu 29-Aug-13 12:57:01

- Have you visited a B&Q store recently? If so, which one did you visit and what did you think? If you haven't visited recently, what would convince you to go along?
I visited the Exmouth B&Q recently. I think it's a good store.

- If you have been to a B&Q store recently, were the staff helpful? What did you think about the product range and presentation?
I've always found the staff in B&Q to be helpful, if you can find one who's not already helping someone else. It can take a while to find someone to help, but when you do they are generally very good - they understand DIY and know where things are stocked and if they don't know they find someone who does.
The product range is good, but some of the presentation is a bit cluttered and overwhelming.

- What, if anything, do you think B&Q could do better to get more people in store?
A family card, like ikea.

- Have you or your DCs attended a You Can Do It workshop or Kids Can Do It class? If so, which one did you attend and what did you think of it?
No.

mamamidwife Thu 29-Aug-13 13:34:05

I have had a bathroom from B&Q, mid priced, and it was good, very durable and pleasing to the eye.
I've also had a fab Christmas tree from there too smile

k8vincent Thu 29-Aug-13 13:38:44

Have you visited a B&Q store recently? If so, which one did you visit and what did you think? Yes. Brighton. It was well stocked and clearly laid out, but a nightmare to take the children round simply because they love racing down the aisles.

If you have been to a B&Q store recently, were the staff helpful? What did you think about the product range and presentation? The staff were helpful and seemed to know what they were doing. Checkouts weren't too hectic. Good range of products in store - garden stuff not so great, but you can't have everything!

What, if anything, do you think B&Q could do better to get more people in store? My children like to try out the kitchens. It would be nice if they didn't get frowned at by staff when they opened and closed drawers. I clearly remember there being a 'house' in whichever store we went to when I was a child. We loved pretending to live in the different rooms whilst mum and dad found what they were looking for - a bit like Ikea.

Have you or your DCs attended a You Can Do It workshop or Kids Can Do It class? No. My DCs have been too young so far, but DC1 likes the sound of it.

SavoyCabbage Thu 29-Aug-13 13:43:25

B&Q is the first place that my firstborn child ever went. It's in her baby book.

lottytheladybird Thu 29-Aug-13 13:50:18

I haven't been to one recently, as I try and avoid going if possible! If there were more 'pretty' looking displays to attract me, or if they could somehow make it a better experience for my toddlers, then I could be convinced I into going. If I need to use the conveniences for myself or need to change a nappy, I always feel like I have to walk miles to get there. They could do with putting in more parent & child parking spaces to make it a more attractive destination for mums, I think.

I haven't been to any of the classes.

MaxinePeakedistrict Thu 29-Aug-13 14:17:47

Don't want to out myself by giving a location but we have spent so much money in B and Q over the years and I would love to have a loyalty card to earn some freebies!

The staff are generally really friendly and helpful - it's good to talk with older men who can actually give in depth advice on DIY jobs I'm about to attempt.

I always find the garden plants a bit disappointing - expensive compared to our local garden centre and looking a bit neglected. And garden sundries pretty overpriced too.

Again, please, would you introduce a loyalty card?!

pennwood Thu 29-Aug-13 14:24:45

I do property developing so have used B&Q a lot, especially purchasing kitchen units. My local store Burton does not have such a good range as Derby, & I have had to purchase worktops from Derby because Burton do not stock them, when I would prefer to support my local branch. The range of tiles displayed is also inferior to Derby. The trade card is not applicable to me purely because I am not a qualified tradesperson which I find a de-motivator to giving all my custom to B&Q. On my last visit the staff at Burton kept us waiting for wood cutting, & had to be tannoyed several times before attending to us, the excuse, they were in a meeting! Perhaps, it was on improving customer satisfaction! One Bank holiday there was a staff meeting on the sales floor with a Manager while the store was busy with insufficient staff to deal with customer queries. The Manager continued his meeting without any consideration to the needs of the business. Generally the store is well merchandised, clean & tidy. A toilet would be a valuable asset.

redgate Thu 29-Aug-13 14:26:53

Generally it's great, the one near me (a Warehouse) is huge - and it can be hard to know where to start looking for things! But the staff are always helpful, and get loads of advice on what products to buy and how to use them. Garden centre and the decorative bits are lovely smile

The DIY classes are great, have been on a couple and really enjoyed them. Keep meaning to take lo's to try kids classes

PolyesterBride Thu 29-Aug-13 14:29:02

- Have you visited a B&Q store recently? If so, which one did you visit and what did you think? If you haven't visited recently, what would convince you to go along?

I've been to the one in Speke, Liverpool recently. The shop itself is good but I often need help when I'm there and it's really hard to find a member of staff to help. Even if you do find someone they often don't seem very knowledgeable.

- If you have been to a B&Q store recently, were the staff helpful? What did you think about the product range and presentation?

Occasional members of staff are helpful but they are hard to find. Some of them are more knowledgable than others. All of them were polite but I just didn't have enough confidence i their product knowledge compared to a local place. The product range was good.

- What, if anything, do you think B&Q could do better to get more people in store?

Have more staff around to assist customers not just with finding things but explaining how to use them. I think that would be great. I feel embarrassed to ask about practical stuff I know nothing about eg using a drill so if there were people I knew I could ask because it was their job, I would do much more DIY and go much more often. As it is I rarely go unless absolutely necessary because I'm so clueless and there's no one to ask for advice.

- Have you or your DCs attended a You Can Do It workshop or Kids Can Do It class? If so, which one did you attend and what did you think of it?

No I haven't.

- If you haven't been to a B&Q store recently, after looking at the B&Q pages on MN, which pieces of advice or info (if any) did you find the most useful? Has any of the info you've seen made you feel more confident about taking on a redecoration project of your own?

Mekaine Thu 29-Aug-13 15:10:52

B and Q Kirkcaldy. Been there a LOT lately little choice between there and other DIY store locally which seems to be becomung a cushion shop. Good product range for fitting kitchen, tiling walls and floor and redecorating. Needed to ask for help a couple of times hard to find folk DD (14) has got impatient and went and asked couple of times. One time trying to buy bath being sold off for £29 approached four different staff members noone would / could help. Only wanted to ask about support legs never got the chance so left loaded trolley and left. On the whole helpful if you can find anyone in the department! No idea about workshops but bathroom next. Plumbing one would be ace also need to replace gutters. Workshops gret idea my teenagers would probably go to a first home survival one. Incase tgey land in a flat when they go off to uni. A tiling one would have been great a fortnight ago!

B3nnyB0y Thu 29-Aug-13 15:37:24

Bury St Edmunds branch, I went in for several things but always have a look around just to see what’s on the shelves. The staff member I asked for help locating a product took me straight to it and asked if I needed help to carry it (nice but unnecessary). I’ve never failed to find just what I need in the Bury branch although I do often check online to make sure B&Q sell what I want. I had hoped to introduce my DS to B&Q but he fell asleep the second we got in the store. Too overwhelmed I guess.

AFishWithoutABicycle Thu 29-Aug-13 16:16:08

Our local branch (mauldeth rd manchester) is fantastic. I got about million samples of paint from them and asked them to match paint with all sorts of random objects, they always did it with a smile. I also got my fav lamp from them.
I would like it if they had correx though. My gps would have like it too.

nemno Thu 29-Aug-13 16:34:02

When I visit my local B & Q store in Greenwich I find the staff very helpful. The only problem is there aren't enough of them, I stalk aisles endlessly to find one and inevitably they are from a different dept. They are then helpful finding the right person though. The wait at the very few manned checkouts is silly for midday, midweek (which is when i go).

And the paint colour chart slots are often empty and take weeks to be re filled.

But it bears repeating; the staff are great.

We go to b&q a fair bit as there's one not far from us and we are doing a lot of work on the house.

We have never been approached by a member of staff in there and you can never see them!

Dp is quite clued up so knows what he is looking for but I'd be stuck.

Price wise... It's ok. It's a bit dear especially for some of the home furnishings bits and pieces.

I've never done a workshop in there- to be honest there's not a friendly enough atmosphere in there to make me want to join in. Maybe if they had demos going in in store I'd sign up for something having seen something going on before.

B&Q Dunfermline
Use it regularly greatly prefer it to Homebase up the road.
Your paint colour matching service is genius, brought in fabric and the match was perfect smile
Love the lighting section, miles cheaper than specialist lighting shops for the same thing.
However, your wallpaper selections are horrible. I have yet to buy any from you despite decorating 4 houses to date.
Had no idea you held workshops but will check them out.
Your staff are always extremely helpful. Will drop everything to find you that elusive light bulb, rawlplug, etc.

tobiasfunke Thu 29-Aug-13 17:07:37

We got to B & Q (Livingston) a lot because our house and garden are one long project.

Have found staff friendly enough but not very helpful. You can never find someone and it's a bit silly that you can only be helped by someone from the right department. Last time I waited for at least 20 mins at the help desk while they tried to get someone from the department to help me. Despite multiple announcements and staff from other departments hanging around noone turned up so I just left. 6 months ago an order of 12 tiles facilitated 4 visits and waits of up to 40 minutes. The reason why I persevere products are good and reasonably well priced. The lighting and homewares can be remarkably lovely. And probably more importantly there are no other DIY outlets around here-yet.

The stock check system is woeful and my biggest problem with the shop. In the last 4 months I have been in for 3 items all showing stock online and instore - but none to be found. Staff have been worse than useless. They were large items including a dehumidifier and a shelving unit. In the end I went to Argos because at least they know if they have stock.

Iwaswatchingthat Thu 29-Aug-13 19:12:04

Over Christmas we were doing lots of work in our house.

We bought lots of stuff from B and Q and found their staff to be helpful and knowledgable in the areas we asked for help.

Our toilet flush broke about three weeks after purchase and they replaced in store with no questions asked - on presentation of receipt and explanation obviously.

We asked for support with paint matching, again we were well supported and given advice - e.g. One colour we wanted was considered 'too dark' and we were advised to choose a lighter shade for the look we wanted for the room. I was unsure, but it turned out that they were correct so I would value their opinion again.

I think they have a good range of reasonable accessories e.g. Printed canvases, light shades, doormats, loo brush holders etc. these are reasonable and quite funky really.

We would use the voucher (if chosen) to continue our house renovations - we need to completed our lounge and would hope to choose some paint and perhaps a rug with the voucher.

We have not used any of the children's activities at B and Q, but they do sound like something my two would enjoy. We tend to go without them so we can have a proper look round.

As a final note - the cafe at our local B and Q is actually really lovely and I have enjoyed a lovely hot chocolate and a cookie there. The paninis looked nice too!!! It is quite odd as it is amongst a load of tiles and wooden beams piled up, but then turn a corner and there is a costa style place with clean loo etc.

So yes all in all I feel positive about B and Q.

Iwaswatchingthat Thu 29-Aug-13 19:14:25

Ps: I must add we would never do DIY, so buy stuff at B and Q to give to tradesmen/women to use! We managed to attach a loo seat, everything else we leave to the pros, no amount of guide books would convince me otherwise!

I just got a B&Q mini catalogue inside a magazine. The rugs, lamps and wall paper all look great. But then when I go to my local store (Harlow) the range is totally different - it seems to mainly be aimed at professional builders with lots of trade building products but little home decor stuff. And the store is so dirty and drab - everything seems covered in a layer of cement dust - so I wouldn't want to buy anything like a rug from there anywhere, it would be filthy before it leaves the shop.

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