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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

newtothenet Tue 27-Aug-13 16:47:44

Ooh, B&Q (Grimsby) were very helpful to me recently. I asked for a melamine shelf to be cut to size, got it home and realised I'd asked for it to be cut 10cm too big. I took it back and the lovely man on the wood cutting service took another 10cm off it for me for free. I often find B&Q's prices to be higher than other retailers, but the customer service makes it worth shopping there.

I'd love to try the workshop classes, but it's not really feasible at the moment with having a young breastfeeding baby. Are there classes specifically for absolute beginners - they would be great!

kinkyfuckery Tue 27-Aug-13 19:58:29

I've visited our local B&Q (Arbroath) a fair bit recently, as I moved home 3 months ago.

The most recent time I visited with my two children (5 and 8) in tow. I was looking for a specific colour paint for my bathroom and a young male staff member was on hand to help us. He scoured the shelves with me to try to find it, then we finally checked the listings and found it would have to be mixed up! D'oh! My 8 year old daughter has ADHD and ASD and was thoroughly fascinated with how this was to be done. He was so patient and friendly with her and talked her through every step of the process, getting her input and letting her 'help'. She came away proud as punch that she was involved in what would have otherwise been a very boring shopping trip.

Puppypoppet Tue 27-Aug-13 20:46:48

Recently visited the York Hull Road store. It is pretty much the same as any other B & Q - fairly easy to find things and not too hard to find staff if you need help.

We found the staff really helpful. We needed some wood cut to size to replace broken lats under a bed. The gentlemen on the cutting section were very helpful and knowledgeable - providing advice and assistance.

Can't really think of anything B & Q can do to attract more customers - possibly a nicer cafe would make people stay longer.

- No we haven't attended a You Can Do It workshop or Kids Can Do It class - never heard of them tbh.

Crocklebog Tue 27-Aug-13 21:26:43

When I visited my local store (Norwich), I found the staff to be extremely helpful and knowledgeable. There was no hard sale.

I would be more inclined to visit if there was a nice café and more interior displays.

I have never heard of the workshop ir kids class before this thread!

We go to either Bradford thornbury or the big one in Leeds. The staff at the Leeds one are helpful and friendly, not keen on the Thornbury branch though. The ranges of products are good but I don't see myself buying curtains and cushions there. My husband takes our eldest son to the kids can do it classes every Sunday morning, they both really enjoy it and Hannah is such a good teacher. It's a shame that so many people book it don't show up. We have now just about completed our house, replastered it all new kitchen just fi iahed the new bathroom. Next on our list is to extend down and maybe up.

chickensaladagain Tue 27-Aug-13 22:33:13

I went to the Huddersfield store last week looking for a new kitchen for my mum -she's a bit immobile at the moment so I'm doing the leg work for her

3 staff in those little glass pods -1 on the phone, 2 deep in conversation

They looked busy so I had a wander round by myself, went back to the glass pods, still looked busy, hung around for 5 minutes+ still no one came to ask me if I needed any help

I hate asking in shops, especially when people look busy

So I walked out

dahville Wed 28-Aug-13 00:46:17

I have recently been to the Pentwyn B&Q - I went to check out garden storage solutions.

Generally I don't want help in a store so I am pleased that I don't get approached much in B&Q but on this occasion I did need help and there was nobody around.

I had no idea that B&Q held workshops, I think they could be advertised better at my local store.

AngryFeet Wed 28-Aug-13 01:00:10

We visited the Croydon Purley Way branch this weekend to buy supplies as we were decorating our lounge. It is a big store so has a great selection. We bought paint and decorating equipment plus some new powertools for DH. The staff we spoke to were friendly and helpful, the only downside was the lack of a customer toilet. I cant think of anything else B&Q could do to attract more customers - the store I went to had everything I could ever need for DIY and it is the first place I will think of when I need decorating supplies.

I have never heard of the workshops but will look them
up now.

ouryve Wed 28-Aug-13 08:30:06

- 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?

We visit the Durham store a couple of times a month. We live fairly close to it, so it's convenient. It's massive and has a good range of stock. It's a lot better laid out than our nearest homebase stores and much better for wheelchair/buggy access etc.

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

There's a good range of stock, but it can be a bit hard to find stuff and some of the larger items are in poor condition. When we were looking for new internal doors, last year, we were frustrated at the poor choice of doors in solid wood (awkward shaped doors frames, so needed plenty of scope for alteration) and when we settled on a style, had to rummage through them to find ones which weren't too badly damaged. We settled for one with a slight chip out of a top corner and one with a slight flaw in the glass.

We needed to replace our front gate, this year and they only had one of the one we liked and it was badly made and a bit had fallen off it. We ended up scouring ebay and sourced a much better quality one, in the same style, from a local joiner, cheaper.

We did have a problem when we went in the evening, once, and it was busy and there were no manned tills open because of lack of staff. The guy who helped us all through the self service checkouts was very helpful, if a little hassled, though!

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

Keep them tidy.

- 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?

DH attended a plastering class a few months ago and, since he discovered that he can do it for free with his clubcard, he has taken DS1 along to several of the kids' you can do it classes. There's 3 instructors - 2 are great, but one of them is a bit disorganised in comparison, which is a problem when the classes are fully booked. DS1 has been enjoying learning to use a hammer and a drill and has made some nice things that he's proud of.

AnneEyhtMeyer Wed 28-Aug-13 08:42:41

Whenever I go to either of my nearest B&Qs (Burton or Derby) there are no staff at the tills and the staff I can see in the store are "busy".

I would go more often if you employed staff to help customers and serve on the tills.

The You Can Do It courses aren't run in my local stores (or weren't last time I checked). DD attempted to join in a kids' planting thing last year but was shooed away as she was too young.

The thing I dislike most about B&Q is the self-service tills. The voice on them is shrieky and insistent, and I hate using them. As the tills are never manned I have no choice. It makes me dread shopping at B&Q.

The best thing about B&Q is the layout - very easy to get around, and doesn't seem like a jumble sale (unlike Homebase).

Spirael Wed 28-Aug-13 09:23:57

- 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?

Like justshootmenow I visit either the Bradford Thornbury store or the big store in Leeds.

Bradford Thornbury seems a bit tired and neglected. The parent and child parking outside is never available as it either has trolleys piled on it or rude 'white van men' take the spot. I've reported this to the staff, but they never care.

The Leeds store is better, but it's huge and I always get hopelessly lost. A layout map near the entrance or better signs would help. Some of the aisles are very narrow, making it difficult for two trolleys to pass one another. I still haven't found if there's a lift to get to the upstairs section with a trolley, so I've never ventured up there!

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

Bradford is a bit hit and miss. I've had excellent help from very knowledgable members of staff on occasion. But quite often it's hard to find a staff member, at which point they look at you blankly and go to find someone else. By the time they've found them and the answer, I've generally solved the query by myself or gotten fed up and moved on! (Maybe that's part of their plan?)

A plus for Bradford is that it's nicely laid out and easy to find what you need. You can walk along the central aisle and clearly see signs on both sides to highlight the area you're looking for, with products set out sensibly. Product selection is good, I can usually find what I'm looking for.

Leeds seems to be flooded with friendly staff. There is always someone waiting by the entrance with a smile and there are lots of staff hovering around the self service area for when the machines inevitably misweigh or don't have your item on the system.

Once you find the section you're looking for, the products are laid out well and there's a good selection - though I often find they've sold out of the item I want.

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

Could do with some better facilities for families. I have no idea whether they have toilets available or not - if there are then they're not well sign posted! Getting a trolley is pot luck and there's usually only one type with one toddler seat, nothing for babies.

To be honest, running a creche section like they do in Ikea would be fantastic, as it's hard to make DIY decisions and lift heavy things into trolleys with a small child hanging on your arm, declaring they're bored, pulling things off shelves and touching every dangerous thing they can find.

Alternatively, maybe there could even be something available at the entrance to entertain kids, like a leaflet designed for them with a puzzle to do, or a map on which they have to mark where the mascot is hiding this week? A small prize could be then given by the exit for the right answer, or a box to put their entry from which a winner is chosen once a week.

Or, smaller pull along trolleys that they can use which are not going to attack other peoples ankles quite so badly. Then, special displays around the store of "Secret Tokens" in different colours at child height. The kids have to find them and put one of the tokens in their special basket while the parents do the real shopping. When they get to the exit, the tokens are collected in and the kids get kudos/a prize.

- 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, there are no adult classes available at Bradford or Leeds (why?!), and DD is too young for the Kids Can Do It classes at Leeds.

LtGreggs Wed 28-Aug-13 09:34:56

- Have you visited a B&Q store recently? If so, which one did you visit and what did you think?

Have been to Stirling B&Q within the last month. Fine - same as ever. I usually choose B&Q over the nearby Homebase and Wickes as seems to have wider selection.

I like that they have customer toilets - have saved us on several trips with young DC in tow.

DC love the pull-along baskets.

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

Staff sparse but helpful. Not product experts. Gardening range mediocre. We were looking for hosepipe fittings and got the impression of lots of stock but could not find what we actually wanted. Lots of odd looking boxes of odds & ends apparently for sale on top shelves (like a plastic box marked 'hose parts' just full of junk). Looks like someone's back shed!

Don't really like all the cheap-buys near the tills - just a load of tat.

No-one ever available for cutting wood to size, and they won't cut narrow wood (like 2"x4" or skirting board type stuff) - this would be super-helpful.

Realise this is all negative comments, but overall I like that you can usually use them as a one-stop-shop and can find something to cover most jobs.

- 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 - never heard of them.

thesoupdragon44 Wed 28-Aug-13 16:35:57

we have a local B&Q and it has changed a lot with a big refit recently it is much easier to find what I want and to get ideas on how I can revamp my room. I have bought the wall paper now I just need to get pasting!

WildThongsHeartString Wed 28-Aug-13 16:44:27

We ordered a gas BBQ online, but delivery was too long. I called customer services who located the same one in the Bishopbriggs store and had it put aside for us. When we went to collect it there was some confusion over payment as we had already paid online but the store couldn't accept that as DIY.com are different from B&Q . Basically the customer service lady had given us wrong information, but the store manager was really helpful, helping us to cancel the original payment and then pay again. Took ages though but got sorted eventually. We use B&Q all the time and will continue to, not the classes or anything, but gret range of paints and garden stuff.

CheeryCherry Wed 28-Aug-13 16:51:47

Yes been to the huddersfield and halifax stores over the summer as we've been doing a lot of decorating, so needed to buy a lot of paint. Wish the matchpots were cheaper, I've stopped buying them and just take a gamble on colour choices.
I like B&Q, it makes me feel independent and organised when I purchase from there. The stores are always clean, tidy and staff have always been helpful.
I guess more offers would help attract more customers, more flyers or weekend sales.
Have not heard of the classes, but would be interested in adult DIY skills sessions.

LadyMilfordHaven Wed 28-Aug-13 16:53:59

i went in for the first time in a year today
queues huge and three staff standing in an aisle watching the q.

i went to ask for something. Hand wafted to aisle 28

counldnt find aisle 28, asked the kitchen woman - she pointed to it.
NO ONE offered to get me the product.

got there and coudnt see it, eventually found ONE right at the back that no one had pulled to the front

fucking nora - how shit is that?

LadyMilfordHaven Wed 28-Aug-13 16:55:56

also years ago some paving slabs fell on s1 that the manager at the scene admitted had been stacked wrongly.
he was knocked over and was severely bruised.

Your legal team did their best to minimise your culpability at the time and in the end only with a lawyers threat of being sued did you ever offer any settlement, this was a child of about one year old.

how shit was that?

Rooners Wed 28-Aug-13 17:22:11

Ok. I'm a pretty experienced DIYer and have tiled various walls including an entire bathroom (about 10 corners in it too) by myself.

I've also laid floors (screed/tiled/slate), built wooden worktops, fitted electrical sockets, taps, sinks, panes of glass and so on. I've also handbuilt a huge chicken run, alone, and put up a lot of fences and gates. So I do like a bit of DIY.

Unfortunately I don't really like B&Q.

The reasons are several.

One: there appears to be difficulty in communications between various people and departments.

Lots of knowledgeable folk work there but most of the time you end up standing round waiting for ages before anyone comes along, let alone the right person. They will sometimes recommend a certain person but that person isn't always there - one time we were asked to come back for advice the next day as no one could help.

This is a superstore. I think the hugeness makes it worse if anything. If you're waiting for a missing barcode for example at the till, you're there about 20 minutes hoping the person isn't actually lost.

Secondly stock. The website is nothing to do with the stores is it - be honest! Everything listed as 'in stock' online, in your local store, is missing when you get there or no one knows where it is. So you don't bother ordering or reserving stuff. The reserve page doesn't seem to work anyway last time I tried it.

Thirdly, there's a lot of discontinued, or opened, or damaged stock in various places including the clearance shelves but most of it is unpriced - so you stock up on loads of small handles or tiles or whatever, get to the checkout and find it's still £8 a tile or whatever it was before, and no one will mark it down. So you leave it all instead of giving it a home. This frustrates me a lot as I love to get stuff on clearance and make use of it.

Fourth - the constant announcements that seem to be triggered by us walking through the door, about keeping your children under control as they may be at any time run over by a fork lift truck. And here you are on MN trying to get us into your shops. THINK about that one smile

There should be a play area in the bigger shops. There really should.

Gawd knows there is space for one.

Lastly there is a very strange man at our B&Q and every time I go in there he expects a conversation, which I don't always have time for. However he does mark stuff down. Then I wonder if he is risking his job and feel guilty.

Lastly (again) the vending machines don't ever work.

I thank you.

Rooners Wed 28-Aug-13 17:27:50

Oh also delivery from store or elsewhere.

I wanted a shed last month. Could they deliver it (about a mile and a half)? Yes but it will take a few weeks and cost you £20. hmm

Ok I'll order it online - presume that will be free delivery?

oh no I think it's the same charge if you order it online.

Oh.

(go home and check...delivery from online shed dept is indeed free)

(order shed. Get a letter in the post the next day saying thankyou, we will call to arrange delivery. No one calls. This was a fortnight ago)

Theimpossiblegirl Wed 28-Aug-13 18:03:26

I popped into B&Q on the weekend. The staff were helpful and there was a good range.

I only wanted a tin of paint and was hoping for a deal. Most paints were on 3 for 2 but I would have preferred a discount on one.

I can usually find what I want and a few extra bits for the house/garden easily enough but get bored within half an hour (DIY is not my thing) but DH can wander the aisles for hours.

B & Q is a bit specialist so I don't know how they could get more people in. Maybe holding workshops/demonstrations? Homebase seem to have more offers and is generally laid out more attractively, so maybe that's the way to go.

Elainey1609 Wed 28-Aug-13 18:43:07

Went to sidcup/orpington b and q recently to browse
When actually speaking to staff they are helpful and know what they are talking about but again very sparse
However when going to pay for something the ques are really long with only 1 or 2 tills open and staff just standing around watching.

Stock is very often stacked not very safely, saw things falling over a number of times

Your on line stuff ...delivery just takes to long im afraid

Most of time now always go to homebase or wicks and some times even poundland as you seem to be too expensive compared to other stores

Letitsnow9 Wed 28-Aug-13 21:36:59

Our family have been to quite a few in Surrey lately and found them very hit and miss. Some great advice and good products, another when they tried to refuse to take back a completely broken and dirty lamp as we didn't see it was broken before taking it out of the box. That's because you couldn't see it! Staff couldn't understand why we had taken it out to see that it was broken, we also felt a relative was taken advantage of when buying a bathroom after admitting she didn't know what she needed

jaamy Wed 28-Aug-13 23:09:33

DH is a big fan of B&Q. I am not, not because I don't like B&Q but because I am not a fan of wandering around for an hour pretending to know what I am looking for and then asking a member of staff anyway!
We often visit St Helen's, Warrington and DH has visited Widnes store which he says is smaller than the others so not as good!
Funnily enough our DDs love B&Q. Think it is the space and very often there is some kind of activity - colouring in or biscuit icing - that can occupy them. Problem is, the activity is always at the other end of the store from where we need to be and I end up chaperoning kids while DH wanders off to enjoy the hardware!! A treasure trail type activity would be much better as we often end up covering the whole store searching for items.
The staff in both St Helen's and Warrington have proven to be helpful whenever they have been found.

jaamy Wed 28-Aug-13 23:14:50

IME, the B&Q stores are much better organised than Homebase. Might just be in our area (Northwest) but I found the staff at the Runcorn and Aintree Homebase are slow, lack knowledge and, sorry to say, rude!

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.

zimbamummy Thu 29-Aug-13 20:04:28

I recently went into my local store in Kent and two members of their staff were very helpful. Unfortunately they didn't stock what I wanted but were able to tell me where else I could try. They both seemed very knowledgable.
I tend to use b&q fairly regularly but often don't know exactly what I'm looking for or can't articulate myself very well so end up walking round in circles or have to ask for things like 'stretchy rope' (turns out I meant Bungee Cord). Perhaps some kind of glossary would be useful and examples of how they could be used in the home would give people like me ideas about what is possible and available.

neffi Thu 29-Aug-13 20:06:32

B&Q New Malden. A fabulous Eco friendly building. Absolutely huge but plentiful parking.

A good range of stock, helpful staff but the layout can be confusing.

SmallBee Thu 29-Aug-13 20:18:06

- Have you visited a B&Q store recently? If so, which one did you visit and what did you think?

We are visiting the Guildford one a lot at the moment, it is very clearly laid out and everything is easy to find.

- 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 very helpful, we were looking at bathrooms and were asked if we needed any help right away, although we didn't require any. The product range was good as was the presentation.

- What, if anything, do you think B&Q could do better to get more people in store?
not really.

- 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've never actually heard of them before.

B&Q Strood. Awful. Tried to buy paint there whilst heavily (36weeks) pregnant and wrangling my toddler. Suddenly I really needed to wee. Manager lady wouldn't bend the rules for me, sadly you had no customer toilets. I couldn't hold it. I wet myself in the car park. I will never shop there again.

Clawdy Thu 29-Aug-13 22:42:53

What I like about the Stockport branch is the cheerful staff,and the fact that the most helpful and knowledgeable ones are all probably over fifty.

FourGates Thu 29-Aug-13 22:50:19

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

DownstairsMixUp Fri 30-Aug-13 00:00:54

OK our B&Q in whitstable is rubbish, the aisles are badly disorganized, why are the light bulbs a 100000 aisles from the lighting section? Would it not make sense to be close to the lighting section? Also, it is a huge shop but you have a limited amount of homeware stuff like curtains, rugs, etc, really dissapointing to be honest but overall, I find the staff a lot more helpful there than at homebase and other similar stores.

Solo Fri 30-Aug-13 00:48:02

This week, I took my Mum to buy the necessary paint, paper and suchlike for her decorating venture next week. What struck me was the number of staff! these days, you seem to hunt around for a 'floor walker' and when you find one, they don't seem very helpful. B&Q are very much the opposite of this and I am very impressed!
I will be doing quite a bit to my house starting very soon and B&Q will be my place to go! smile

Solo Fri 30-Aug-13 00:53:11

So...in light of that post... blush

- 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?

Yes, Dartford. I took Mum there because that branch is huge and I knew she'd have plenty of choice.

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

Very helpful. Always! Range is excellent though I was disappointed they'd run out of Satin paint.

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

Good special offers are always a crowd pleaser.

- 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 was not aware of these. They sound helpful.

- 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?

littleoaktree Fri 30-Aug-13 01:25:59

- 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?

Yes Greenwich and Old Kent Road stores. I don't like either of them particularly as I find the layout is confusing and they never seem to have the product where I expect it to be so end up trailing around for ages.

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

Staff generally I have found to be unhelpful and lacking in basic product/location knowledge. I'm usually shopping with two small children and it's really not helpful to be told that what I'm after is at the opp end of the Greenwich (v big) store only to get there (dragging bored preschooler and screaming baby in trolley) and be told oh no it's back where you were only to get back there and be told oh maybe we don't have any after all - and not even an apology. Also there never seems to be anyone available to help with some of the bigger items - eg at the weekend I wanted to buy a few bags of bark chips however I could only fit one in the trolley, couldn't have another trolley as couldn't manage on my own with 2 trollies and 2 children and several members of staff walked past me struggling and didn't offer to help. I gave up in the end.

There are some good products though - I love my garden bench and the dc love the playhouse I recently bought them.

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

Make the shopping experience more pleasant and practical for families - the range of products (and the MN involvement) suggests that they want to encourage more families but unhelpful staff, badly designed layout, no customer toilets, trolleys that are only suitable for one child (if you can find an unbroken one), poor stock control and products left around as trip hazards etc do not encourage me to visit more often.

- 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

- 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?

Haven't looked - I'm reasonably confident anyway and do all the redecoration etc in our house.

chickensaladagain Fri 30-Aug-13 06:49:26

pennwood

I'm surprised you haven't got a trade card

In the castleford store I was told because I was buying a large quantity of paint to do my house prior to putting it in the market, I could just say I was property developing and get the discount on the trade card

wonkylegs Fri 30-Aug-13 08:59:57

Staff are often friendly but lacking especially at tills. The self service tills are rubbish but often the only option.
I will not if I can help it buy B&Q branded products, quality is so patchy. Often bits are missing or damaged and require at least second visit to sort out. (this spreads across all departments I'm afraid - garden furniture, kitchen taps, lights, decorating stuff, tools)
I've persevered as often it's the only choice if you need something now, and there is often an expensive branded option.
Convenient if you need something on the spur of the moment, expensive & hit & miss if you can plan in advance and get somewhere else.
It's a shame as som of your bathroom ranges look good but I wouldn't risk the quality and the hassle it would entail.
I hate your website - it's slow, and often inconsistent, I use it for reference and have never bought anything on it , because there are better, cheaper web based options.

AllSWornOut Fri 30-Aug-13 09:11:38

I go regularly to the one Coventry.

I like the way the store is laid out and the own brand products are great quality and value for money. It's our first stop when we need to do some diy.

TheWookiesWife Fri 30-Aug-13 09:34:28

Hi - I went to B&Q in Fleetsbrige Poole two weeks ago . We were decorating our daughters bedroom.
We knew what we wanted - a carpet from there, and a 'feature walls worth of paint' to match the carpet . So picked a paint colour sample from the vast range on show , and found a matching carpet ... Daughter and I headed off to get the paint made up . First off the lady at the paint desk was very patronising - treating me like I was retarded. ( I can't speak anymore due to a brain malfunction - so use a large text app to communicate ) We asked for one can of 2.5l of paint as it was only for a feature wall - and she tried to tell me I'd need 5l as it was a dark red ... I explained the wall is 2.7m long and 1.8m at its highest point and is pitched both sides - she was still insistent - when I asked her what the coverage was on the tin - and she told me - I pointed out that the 2.5l can would give me enough for more than double the recommended number of coats needed - but she was still insistent ! So obviously her maths skills were lacking ! ( and she thought I was stupid ?! Hello !!) She then told me that the sample we had chosen wasn't available... Just not on the computer as was new stock so couldn't make it - so we asked why have the samples out there if they are not available ?! She couldn't give an answer ... Eventually we found another sample that they could make up. Meanwhile my husband was asking for the carpet - they couldn't find it on their system - so after several mins of scratching their heads about it - someone eventually went to the warehouse and got the 3m that we asked for - so we line up with the paint and the carpet to pay .... No ticket on the carpet - just a sticker with the size and colour of it .... Another 7mins waiting for them to go and find out how much it was - despite us telling them ! Were we impressed - no ! Suggested improvements to be made :
Make sure what you offer for sale is on your system - if it's on display - let us buy it easily .
Make sure staff label products cut to size with all the correct information so that the till can process it .
Suggest to your staff they brush up on their maths if advising on paint coverage.
Also check that your staff are not patronising to people who are different !
Will I be going back ???.... The jury is still out on that one !!!

MadMonkeys Fri 30-Aug-13 10:23:17

I recently visited the store at Ventura Park, Tamworth. The product range was good, I found what I wanted. The store is spacious, plenty of room to get around, and clean. The staff were average - rather hassled as there weren't enough to man the tills and they had a long queue of annoyed customers to deal with.

The customer toilets are great, especially when visiting the store with children.

There was a sale on some of the garden plants - unfortunately there didn't seem to be enough space to display them so lots were heaped on top of each other in trolleys, they were squashed, stems broken and fit only for the compost heap - what a shame, they were good plants, just not sold by the end of the season.

There is plenty of parking at the store.

I hadn't heard of the courses, I don't know if this store runs them.

EauPea Fri 30-Aug-13 11:49:04

Recent visit Bristol Warehouse, Longwell Green, could not see ANY staff on shop floor, two tills open with huge queues even though it was Wednesday discount day.

B&Q have lost their edge, they have lost too many staff, service levels are dire, website does not offer whole range available.

Recently in Hartcliffe store, advertised diy class not running, manager and staff arguing who could "be arsed" to do it.

I prefer Homebase for all the above reasons, choose me to win the gift card and who knows maybe I will change my allegiance. wink

tinypumpkin Fri 30-Aug-13 16:30:34

- 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?

No. I have not been for ages. I find them really dull (DIY generally!) so only really go if I have to buy some home diy stuff. I am not sure what would convince me to go along as there is not one that close to us and I do find them so boring. Necessity I suppose!

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

N/A as not been recently.

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

More in store courses would help if we were looking to do some DIY.

- 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 didn't actually know that there were children's classes. This is a good idea although my children are too young I suspect at the moment.

- 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?

THe project pages I thought were good actually and did install some confidence in my ability to do some DIy stuff. Motivation is another issue though and I am not sure how much B&Q could help with that.

littlemonkeychops Fri 30-Aug-13 17:08:52

We usually go to your Exeter store at Sowton. We like B&q, wider range and more spacious store than Wickes/Homebase.

It can often be hard to find what we're looking for or a staff member to help though, a big, clear storeplan when you first come in the door would be very helpful.

I've heard of the workshops on MN but never heard/seen anything about them instore.

And i second the poster above who said the self-service tills are annoying, they shout at you and don't shut up even when you are doing what they've asked you to do.

cherrybath Fri 30-Aug-13 17:56:30

Much prefer B&Q to Homebase and in the store where I generally shop (Chiswick/Brentford) the staff are very helpful, the parking is easy, there is a customer toilet and the queues are not too long.

Stock of lighting is particularly bad, very rarely can I find the item that I want. Have not found that the on-line facility for checking stock is much use - often when it says there is stock there isn't and vice versa. I don't particularly want to wait until the next day either for the Reserve and Collect - Argos can do it the same day, and some of their stores use the Shutl service which makes almost instant local deliveries for less than the price of a cab.

Its annoying that small items (such as packs of hardware or plumbing joints) are often put in the wrong bin. So that if I'm looking for a particular plumbing joint in a full bill with the right label, I find that there is not ONE in there. If I ferret through every bin in the row I sometimes find one or two.

I actually live in Bath and sadly although there are six stores that are listed as local (depending on the Bath postcode used) the nearest is more than 20 minutes drive away. So I have to suffer Homebase and their appalling service and queues.

hotbot Fri 30-Aug-13 18:10:24

Durham one I rubbish. Not enough stuff around to help, not just wine off by the way, and stuff aways out of stock. Extremely frustrating, avoid when I can.

hotbot Fri 30-Aug-13 18:11:26

Gah.. Staff around to help not just a one off .....tho I do feel like wine after slopping there.

hotbot Fri 30-Aug-13 18:12:41

Also no bags.. Riduculous when you are buying paint items

Tyranasaurus Fri 30-Aug-13 18:47:44

- 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?

Several in Notts/Derbys in the last few months

- 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?

plumbing range is poor and expensive- though I don't know if that would get you more mums in.

web site is awful

maybe more stuff for period property, e.g. wide skirting board and architrave, good repro tiles ets

- 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, and wouldn't be interested

- 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?

Don't really feel like I need to be made more confident about DIY projects

Bubbles85 Fri 30-Aug-13 19:45:01

- 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?

Yes - Nursling B&Q and I had a good experience.

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

It is a well stocked store and apart from one item I got all the things I went in for. Normally it's quite hard to find a member of staff free to help, but there were plenty free at this store.

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

More staff available to help at weekends, and that they are more knowledgeable about products that the store stocks.

- 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 attended one of these.

kh137 Fri 30-Aug-13 21:13:12

We usually go to B and Q Blackburn. The range of items there is good and we sometimes use the café.

RedBushedT Fri 30-Aug-13 21:17:57

I usually go to the B&Q in Bidston and have always found the staff to be extremely helpful and knowledgeable. I haven't been for a few months as I'm lacking in cash so my next project has to wait!
I like that I can always find staff members there though. Also, that quite a lot of the staff are older and/or experienced in DIY. I'm fairly clueless.

Cherrygrape Fri 30-Aug-13 22:17:32

- 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 have been recently to my local store and it was a good visit as always. I normally choose to go to b & q over other stores like it as it is cheaper and has most things we need.

- 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 are friendly and helpful, one lady has helped entertain my daughter at the till a few times which is great. The presentation is good and the range is normally good.... It's a shame that the things i have needed that aren't in our store are often not available online

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

Just getting the stocks right, having what you say is in stock- in stock and having more available online.

- 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 we haven't attended, my dh is good at DIY and my dd is too young

I liked seeing the unloved room renovations that were on the website. One in particular has inspired me to make rooms more colour co ordinated.

I do think b & q is a good store smile

Musicaltheatremum Fri 30-Aug-13 22:43:24

Currently renovating my daughters flat. Went to B&Q at the fort in Edinburgh. Fantastic service. Very helpful staff. Even got me a discount as buying so much. Super store as so large. Their kitchens have improved greatly over the years.

Turnipvontrapp Fri 30-Aug-13 23:41:35

Went today, the staff member was very helpful!

stephgr Sat 31-Aug-13 02:09:48

I haven't been to a B&Q for a couple of years because we now live very close to Homebase. Plus, the last time I went to B&Q the queues were so enormous that I walked in and came straight-out. I'd go back if B&Q could persuade me that my shopping experience won't involve waiting in queues for ages

DifferentNow Sat 31-Aug-13 13:01:21

I visited the Dunfermline store recently. It wasn't a great experience. The staff are nowhere to be found and the store layout is impossible. It's really hard to find what you're looking for and I always end up wandering around for ages before I find what I'm after.

I think that free DIY workshops are a fantastic idea - I would definitely be interested in attending one but they don't run at my local store.

Having more available staff, visible and willing to help would make me choose B&Q over another similar type of store.

Willemdefoeismine Sat 31-Aug-13 15:48:56

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?

Yes I have but not recently. We used to have two within walking distance but both have been closed for a good few years. The closest two are now about a 30 minute bus journey away in opposite directions so not entirely convenient, especially when we have Homebase, Wickes and IKEA more accessible!

I have no problem with B&Q other than the distance issue otherwise I would be happy to visit them. So the issue is proximity - open one in a nearby retail park and I will happily visit. Variety is the spice of life methinks and if my memory serves me correctly B&Q do have a good range of affordable products!

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

Not applicable unfortunately.

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

Some type of 'marriage' akin to the Homebase/Habitat/Laura Ashley collaboration would work very well to my mind....

- 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?

Yes DH and DD have been to a couple of the Kids Can Do It Workshops and thoroughly enjoyed them!

- 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?

It's all been inspiring really. I can't believe how innovative and creative the Mumsnetters have been!

WetAugust Sun 01-Sep-13 00:41:38

- 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?

Longwell Green. It's vast! But it's always out of stock in the full range of hinges, sliding bolts and metal joining plates.

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

Staff are really helpful and very knowledgeable. Wanted replacement door knocker and staff member ensured it had same fixings as old one so I wouldn't have to drill new holes. Also gave me tip on replacing Stanley blades.

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

Offer discounts more frequently

- 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?

Have not been to one.

- 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?

Got the idea for raised bed planters. Hasn't increased my confidence. Have always done all my own redecoration anyway.

pussinwellyboots Sun 01-Sep-13 14:29:12

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?

We often pop into our local (Penrith) store to buy bits and pieces

- 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 are helpful when asked and it feels a pleasant store to go into (easier than wickes which seems to be for hardcore DIY/trade)

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

Special offers, events,

- 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'd be keen but I don't think that our local store do them,

- 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?

xxxkadzxxx Sun 01-Sep-13 15:50:30

I visited my local B&Q in Norwich, Hall Road last week. I usually try to avoid the store as i find the staff in there extremely rude and unhelpful but i had to go as Homebase had closed early! It was average, as expected and the same members of staff were standing there looking sour! A staff member with authority was actually having an argument with a customer on customer services as i entered the store.

As stated above the staff are very unhelpful and rude except a few. There are a lot of young staff in there who i actually felt sorry for as they didn't seem to know a lot but had a lot of responsibility. They tried to help their best but were unable to. Other staff were very hard to find, there didn't seem enough. The product range and presentation were both good.

I think they should improve their staff-have nicer people and more of them! I also think their staff should be trained better and not have so much responsibility on their hands until they are. I also think they should have better promos to attract customers. I have only ever gone to B&Q after seeing one promotion which was relevant to me. Although there are lots offered and advertised i dont think the deals are particularly cheap, especially compared to other competitors and even discount stores. A lot of the checkout staff don't seem to know about the membership card and how it works! I think it would be nice if i didn't have to explain it to them everytime i go into store, perhaps they should be introducing it to other customers instead?! I also think it would be good to have a proper loyalty scheme and a proper card as well, at the moment i have to carry a piece of paper in my purse with my membership number written on it!

I haven't attended any and nor have my children but i would really like to give them a go. The courses which have appealed to me haven't been local unfortunately but when one comes up nearby which i am interested in, i will definitely attend.

I am keen to take on a redecoration project of my own but it wont be for a while until my bank account recovers from the summer holidays!!

hotair Sun 01-Sep-13 19:47:55

Went to b and q cribbs causeway recently- nicely laid out and had an excellent selection. I noticed a lot of adverts for the courses thing and .the classroom- looked fairly interesting actually.
The product range seemed fine- there was a guy at the front entrance to ask directions of. However he was busy with another customer and didn't seem to know whether the store sold fridges which was what the customer was after.
It does seem a bit like a giant warehouse, but then it is a giant warehouse! Not sure how you'd get round that. The staff ime are also a problem- a lot of jobs worths and no-one knows anything outside of their immediate job.
Haven't been to a class- my children are a bit young.
I've enjoyed b and q being on mumsnet- it's made me think about redecorating and gardening needs in my home a lot more and given me some good ideas to think about- I'll be planting a lavender hedge in the front garden next year- perfect as my mil is allergic!

wheretoyougonow Sun 01-Sep-13 19:52:11

I went to the store in Abingdon yesterday and today. I have to be honest I was disappointed. We needed help to choose the right tap but although there were four members of staff close by they were all chatting about their social lives.
We did buy some things but the store looks run down and old. Next time I will be trying the nearby Homebase first. hmm

LaTrucha Sun 01-Sep-13 20:06:44

- 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?
Aberystwyth. all the staff were very helpful. I visit because it is the only big shop of its kind near me. In all honesty I do try and use the smaller ocal shops first. They often have something interesting. I find B&Q pretty dull as a shop. There's never a sense of buying soemthing because it has taken my fancy. It has most stuff I need, but I don't like DIY and I never come away feeling happy or that I have got a bargin, just feeling relatively satisfied that at least I've found what I wanted and usually the price is not too horrendous. The home decor is preety awful. It is much better than the Focus that was on the same site.

- If you have been to a B&Q store recently, were the staff helpful? What did you think about the product range and presentation? Staff were very helpful. Product range was pretty full. Plants are very overpriced. Presentation was bog standard. Home decor range is not tempting at all.

- What, if anything, do you think B&Q could do better to get more people in store? Why do so many people go to IKEA for furniture? A range from cheap upwards, all with a good design and the possibility you might find just the thing, or something you really like.

- 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. My children are probably too little but I've never heard of one.

- 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? N/A

GetKnitted Sun 01-Sep-13 21:18:26

I haven't visited a B&Q store recently. There isn't one near my house and I would have to have a very particular project, that Wickes couldn't help out with, to entice me that far.

In my case, if there was a B&Q reasonably close, we would go, as it is we make do with what we can get locally.

TiredFeet Sun 01-Sep-13 21:24:00

- 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?

yes, fairly recently. the Hedge End store. We go a fair bit to get bits and pieces my husband needs for DIY. I quite like it, they always seem very tolerant of us having our toddler son in tow.

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

yes fairly helpful staff, and its normally fairly easy to find a member of staff. but we (and they) don't always find it easy to find what we are looking for, it is normally there in the store but the layout is a bit confusing

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

easier system for finding products so we don't spend half our time wandering up and down aisles

- 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 but I saw the posters for them and they look like a brilliant idea!

- 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?
I don't know about feeling more confident, but it is inspiring me to consider projects (or nagging DH to undertake them grin)

androbbob Sun 01-Sep-13 21:40:12

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?

Went to Aintree store twice this week - for electrical socket and curtains as turning sad lounge into loved room!

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

Staff very helful - took me to correct aisle and helped me choose item. Store was in middle of changing display when walk in.

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

Our local one is always busy.

- 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?

Never done one but would be interested so will check in store.

confusedofengland Mon 02-Sep-13 08:17:58

- 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?

We often visit the B&Q Warehouse in Chelmsford. My most recent visit there was last week. I expect we will be visiting frequently during the coming months as we have just moved house & have bought a 'project'. On the whole I am impressed with B&Q, but on this visit I found the staff to be unhelpful and the store to be rather empty in places (perhaps due to stocktaking or change of season)?

- If you have been to a B&Q store recently, were the staff helpful? What did you think about the product range and presentation?
No, they were not helpful. I was essentially told that a product I had ordered & paid for in July was not ever going to reach me. This product forms an essential part of a toilet, for which we had bought the rest of the parts, on a discounted price, on the understanding that we could obtain this remaining part. I was told that I could return the rest of the toilet & pay full price for an identical set - despite initially being told I would have this part within a week hmm. I was also told that no discount would be offered, although this is B&Q's mistake angry. As above, some parts of the store did not have many products in.

- What, if anything, do you think B&Q could do better to get more people in store?
Our local store is always in poor repair - often buckets around to catch water from leaks. There is also often queueing at tills. Maybe some kind of cafe or play area to make it family friendly would help, too.

- 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 we have not attended any of these.

- 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?

Piffpaffpoff Mon 02-Sep-13 11:55:47

I visited a store last week to buy paint under the 3for2 offer. I hadnt been for a while and I was surprised to see a lot more soft furnishings and 'decor' stuff like pictures and stuff. It's maybe always been there but it was much more prominently displayed.

There were plenty of staff around and while I didn't need any help, if I had I would have had no problem finding someone to ask.

I've not attended a workshop, no need to or interest in doing so.

Yonilovesboni Mon 02-Sep-13 13:29:33

I love my local b&q at chesterfield!
I have made a lot more visits as they have become trendier with the soft furnishings (there is some really lovely pieces)!
I find there is always staff around to help, the staff have always been very friendly and professional.smile

Dededum Mon 02-Sep-13 14:14:22

Went to the Guildford B&Q recently to buy some lightbulbs. No problem.
Asked if they had caddy biogradeable bags, maybe, no one offered to take me to the aisle.

Only one person serving. Paid, then asked if I could have a bag, he then proceeded after prompting to pack lightbulbs. How did he think I was going to carry 30 lightbulbs?

The strore seemed on have limited stock, disengaged staff. Next time I will go next door to Homebase.

SmeeHee Mon 02-Sep-13 15:33:39

I recently went to the Cribbs Causeway, Bristol B&Q with my husband and children to buy some specific items.

It's a large B&Q and their product range is good. We managed to find most things we needed with ease and the staff were very helpful directing us to the thing we hadn't managed to spot.

The presentation on this visit was also mostly good, however when we browsed the bathroom display area there were a couple of things that looked a bit tatty and weren't working properly. I realise that it must be difficult to keep the display items looking immaculate in such a big store but it is quite off-putting if the thing you were considering buying doesn't look like it will last long. The awful state of the kitchens in there a few years ago stopped me from enquiring about prices and we bought elsewhere.

While we were shopping my eldest needed to use the loo and I was very disappointed in the state of the ladies toilets - I doubt that they get much use during the day but they didn't appear to have been cleaned recently. It's probably fairly low on their list of priorities but the toilets could do with a refurbishment!

I was aware of the You Can Do It workshops - a friend of mine has done a couple and really enjoyed them and found them useful. I will probably look into them when my youngest starts pre-school next year. I hadn't heard about the Kids Can Do It classes until now!

CMOTDibbler Mon 02-Sep-13 16:15:52

In our local B&Q, I find it very hard to get help if you need it - feels like it needs floating helpers who don't get dragged into customer services/tills, but are there just for advice.

A 'click and collect' service would be great for when you know what you want and just want tp grab and go - which is greatly impeded by the 'help' of children

flamingtoaster Mon 02-Sep-13 17:03:36

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 went to the Colchester B&Q last week. It was hard to find the item we wanted but a member of staff helped.

- 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 very helpful. Was disappointed with one item we wanted as the packs were all damaged with items loose in a box.

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

Advertise special offers more widely - have more days like Homebase's "15% off everything instore" days.

- 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?

Didn't realize you did these - will consider doing one soon!

melliebobs Mon 02-Sep-13 17:08:27

I visited b&q on Saturday 31st August. It was the one in bamber bridge near preston. It was ok. Store is looking a little run down now. The big black b&q signage above the entrance is all faded no needs a good lick of paint. Inside the first few foot of the store is absolute chaos with piles of random products in the middle of the floor. I got part of what I needed. I Wanted chrome hinges for a cupboard but the size I needed was only available in zinc and brass. There were non hanging on the rail, no one around to ask, but luckily managed to find three packets that had been discarded on a lower shelf!

Were the staff helpful? Well if you read the comment above there was no staff to be seen when I needed them. Product range is good. But as for presentation I've noticed they've changed how they display the wallpaper. There used to be 6/7ft boards with a good stretch of each paper so you can really get a feel for what it looks like. Important if its patterned. But now it's more like a little square foot which isn't really big enough to get an idea of what it looks like. I'm not in the market for wallpaper right now but that would put me off a bit.

I can't suggest anything apart from give the front of the store a bit of an update to attract people into the store.

Haven't attended a workshop. Didn't even know they did them!

manfalou Mon 02-Sep-13 22:19:39

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?

We went to the chesterfield store for some paint, its quite well laid out and good for those who have pushchairs...like myself.

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

We needed help finding the correct undercoat for our newly plastered conservatory wall and the staff on the paint desk were very helpful. Turned out to be quite a good selection to choose from.

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

The Chesterfield store seemed really busy but a good promotion always gets the people in and would never go a miss.

- 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...Ive never even heard of them but they sound interesting.

aristocat Mon 02-Sep-13 22:41:52

I haven't been to a B&Q store recently either but we do have a good one several miles away.
I enjoyed looking and reading the garden projects on here but it has just made me more convinced that I need decking and a comfy garden area of my own. Not sure when this will happen as it will cost £££.

Lent1l Tue 03-Sep-13 22:10:30

Visited B&Q Warrington today and was quite disappointed, went in to buy rain deflectors for the bottom of our patio doors and there was one in the whole store! A store that size and only one available in any colour, means going out to another store tomorrow to try again.

sleepyhead Fri 06-Sep-13 16:13:55

I recently visited the Glasgow Great Western Retail Park store to buy decorating supplies.

I wasn't very impressed by their stocks of their own brand paints but the staff were helpful, as they always have been when I've visited. I was able to get everything else I needed and the layout made it easy to find everything. (I do tend to "know where things are in B&Q" though, which dh as a Half Man half Biscuit fan thinks is really sad).

My only gripe would be the So Called One Coat Paint that I ended up buying. Was it bollocking bollocks angry hmm. After two coats it looks good though and I guess the normal emulsion would have likely taken four. Next time I'm getting Dulux.

Solo Wed 11-Sep-13 15:00:54

Am a bit annoyed that all the stores seem to have got rid of the public toilets!

AngelieMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 12-Sep-13 15:00:53

Thanks for all your comments! The winner of the prize draw is tobiasfunke - congratulations! I'll PM you shortly to get your details smile

I preferred b&q when there were actually staff to ask for help. For the last few years I've really struggled to find help. It used to feel like there was staff in every aisle

bnqsuck Wed 22-Jan-14 23:46:55

Horrendous customer relations: After spending nearly 6 grand with B&Q, your kitchen salesman accused me and my 8-month pregnant wife of stealing, falsely calling us 'bad debtors' whilst parading us around the store. Never been so humiliated and slandered.

And what makes it worse? No proper apology, nor compensation.

You just don't care.

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