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Bunnings home improvement and gardening store - share your best home improvement tips - win £200 voucher NOW CLOSED

(161 Posts)
AnnMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 10-Jul-17 11:01:18

This thread is for the 10 MNers who went along to the Grand Opening Weekend of the new Bunnings Warehouse in Milton Keynes on 8/9 July. Thanks so much for going along, we hope you enjoyed it!

Non attendees:
To be in with a chance of winning £200 leisure voucher, please share your best home improvement tip on this thread - everyone who does so will be entered into a prize draw where one MNer will win the voucher!

Attendees:
Below are a few feedback questions for you to answer - if you have any more comments, please feel free to add them to your response. Do share your feedback - tag @bunnings_uk

Why did you want to visit Bunnings in Milton Keynes?
What did you enjoy about it?
Did it inspire you? If yes, in what ways?
What did you spend your £20 on? Please share a photo of your purchase(s)
Do you think you’d return to the new Bunnings store when you were after home improvement or gardening products?
How would you describe the store to someone who had never been?

All the attendees who share feedback will be entered into a prize draw where one winner will win a £100 leisure voucher voucher.

Thanks, and good luck with the prize draws!

MNHQ

Standard Insight T&Cs apply

Umpteenthnamechange Mon 10-Jul-17 13:50:45

We had a great time! It all began a bit chaotically on Saturday where I had ask five People to be directed to the right person and none had heard of mumsnet or why I felt like I was supposed to get a voucher.

Pros :

Great atmosphere
Very affordable snacks at £1 a scone
Very helpful and friendly staff making sure we were okay
Nice music and peppa pig was a great success
Lots of freebies like popcorn went down well with toddler!
DH enjoyed the sausages
We picked up lots of stuff with our voucher- a picnic cool bag, a portable BBQ, bbq tools , a night light for DS and BBQ wipes

Cons
A bit chaotic
Difficult to move buggy around in the cafe area as very crowded and narrow
The play areas weren't exactly for little toddlers so some soft play stuff would have been good

Had a good time!

Albadross Mon 10-Jul-17 13:57:14

Why did you want to visit Bunnings in Milton Keynes? - we're doing up our house and have found very little choice in the other big MK stores, so was curious to see what Bunnings would be like (never been to one before)

What did you enjoy about it? - Seemed like they had a lot more stock available, huge space, great play area for kids and the staff were very helpful and visible too. Their own-brand stuff looked good quality and the range of garden furniture will be getting a revisit soon!

Did it inspire you? If yes, in what ways? - it did renew my interest in looking at things for the house after months of being increasingly bored by wallpaper, light fittings and the lack of stock for things chosen online in actual stores in places like B&Q.

What did you spend your £20 on? Please share a photo of your purchase(s) - I haven't spent it yet but it'll be going on lighting for our bedroom

Do you think you’d return to the new Bunnings store when you were after home improvement or gardening products? - Yes - we'll be going back next week to have a look when there are less people

How would you describe the store to someone who had never been? - Like a bigger, cheaper but more user-friendly version of B&Q or Wickes

Mummysh0rtlegs Mon 10-Jul-17 14:03:02

Why did you want to visit Bunnings in Milton Keynes?
My DS1 (4) had seen the blimp from the A5 and wanted to go and see what was going on.

What did you enjoy about it?
The staff were all lovely, couldn't have been nicer or more friendly. We went at 3pm on Saturday and my DS was gutted all the things were shut down, he had a go on the slides and enjoyed that. We went back Sunday morning and had fun in the fairground and wandered around the store. Though both days the store was insanely hot. As we left security gave my kids balloons and colouring packs. They were delighted!

Did it inspire you? If yes, in what ways?

We saw lots of garden things we might go back at look at again, some nice pots and things.
What did you spend your £20 on? Please share a photo of your purchase(s)
We bought a smoking box, various wood chips and a beer can chicken stand. We thought the bbq section was very well stocked.

Do you think you’d return to the new Bunnings store when you were after home improvement or gardening products?

Yes, when it has quietened down a bit! It was a shame there wasn't anything to entertain smaller children. B and Q has soft play and some of that would be nice.

How would you describe the store to someone who had never been?

It is like homebase used to be, a large DIY shed with a cafe and some slides. They have an excellent range of DIY but not so much home stuff.

We really enjoyed our visits, the aisles were very narrow with a buggy and they had propped a slide against a playhouse outside which my toddler tried to climb before my husband removed the slide and the store was incredibly hot. It was nice how much effort they had put in to getting families in and making sure the store was well staffed. We did ask someone where the play area was and we were directed outside, but found it anyway.

We will go back and use the store, prices and range seemed competitive and the parking was ok.

NotJanine Mon 10-Jul-17 14:05:45

My home improvement tip -

When painting - wrap your brushes and rollers in cling film while you are waiting between applying coats. Much less messy than washing them and they are ready to go when you take the cling film off.

Mummysh0rtlegs Mon 10-Jul-17 14:06:21

As usual forgot some photos..

We had no issues finding the man with the envelopes, he was absolutely lovely and offered to show us anything we were after. They really couldn't have been nicer.

We were also delighted to see local community and charities really well represented and we hope the traditional sausage sizzles continue.

Gooseygoosey12345 Mon 10-Jul-17 14:07:03

We visited the new Bunnings store on Saturday. It was really a little chaotic as there was so much going on for their open weekend but all the staff were so helpful, cheery and polite.
The store had a huge range of products at reasonable prices and we bought supplies for our vegetable patch and some carpentry tools.
Parking was a bit of a problem but I imagine that it usually won't be as the car park is quite large and easy to access. I didn't see any parent and child spaces however that could be an oversight on my part.
We had a bit of a problem at the till as the assistant struggled with the gift card but it was resolved promptly and the staff were very apologetic, it really wasn't an issue.
I will definitely be returning to Bunnings and have already recommended the store to friends and family

Mummysh0rtlegs Mon 10-Jul-17 14:08:58

Goosey, parent and child spaces are right outside the front where they were when it was homebase, you go down the first turning on the left and then turn left and left again and they are there with the disabled spaces.

Byrdie Mon 10-Jul-17 14:20:55

My best home improvement tips is don't forget the little things. We moved into a pretty dated (not in a good period way, bit in a 50s/60s way) house and once we'd changed all the carpets and painted it still felt a bit dated. We changed all the sockets, switch covers and lights and it reallt started to look more modern... but it was when we took out all the brass window handles and brass door furniture that it really changed amd it now does look much better. This little bits did make a huge difference. My other tip is use an open envelope masking taped to the wall to under any drilling to catch dust. Saves a hoovering job and great for drilling anything above heavy immovable furniture!

Albadross Mon 10-Jul-17 15:48:34

We weren't supposed to spend the voucher on the day were we? DS was too busy forcing me down the helterskelter (faster than expected and I had to fight to keep my trousers from getting caught on the wooden bits all the way down!) for u to get a proper look at things - plus DH wasn't there and he's sorting out our new kitchen so thought it would be wise for him to agree to what we get.

Umpteenthnamechange Mon 10-Jul-17 16:24:17

The moment DS decided to follow Peppa Pig off the stage

Gooseygoosey12345 Mon 10-Jul-17 16:25:33

@Mummysh0rtlegs ah thank you, obviously I am delusional in my very pregnant state lol

cupofteaplease Mon 10-Jul-17 19:58:24

Why did you want to visit Bunnings in Milton Keynes? I had seen the balloon above the store, and was curious to know what it was all about! Added to that, we are moving house in three weeks, so my dds wanted to check out paint colours for their new room.

What did you enjoy about it? The play area was just the right size for my ds. Also, the sausage sizzle was donating its profit to a local charity my children access- I think the sausage sizzle is a great idea for supporting local charities.

Did it inspire you? Not especially for the indoors as it was so busy it was hard to look at things properly. We enjoyed looking in the garden section though- there were some nice children's toys, and some reasonably-priced bedding plants.

What did you spend your £20 on? Nothing as yet- I am waiting until we have moved.

Do you think you’d return to the new Bunnings store when you were after home improvement or gardening products? Yes I don't see why not. The staff were friendly and helpful, and the carpark would be plenty big enough on a normal weekend (it was rammed this weekend, but there were plenty of attendants to help out).

How would you describe the store to someone who had never been? Large, warehouse-like, industrial, well-stocked.

cupofteaplease Mon 10-Jul-17 20:01:58

I'm not very good at using Instagram, but I've used the tag- not sure it's worked though!

asuwere Mon 10-Jul-17 20:50:42

Non-attendee my tip would he to make sure you've got time to finish any improvements before you start! (I have had a few jobs that have taken longer than the day I had free so then have to finish them as and when which makes it feel as if it's taken forever to finish.)
Also, when painting, elastic band over the top to wipe brush on so you don't get drips on outside of tin (wrap brush in nappy sack/food bag when having a break so it doesn't dry out)

Natsai1 Mon 10-Jul-17 21:20:14

Non attendee: Had a broken shelf on our chest of drawer which was driving me nuts for years. Thought of buying replacement but never seem to have the funds Had it airmarked for the skip but decided to try to replace the runner and a bit of glue and whala, good as new. Lesson. Save yourself some cash by having a go fixing first. If all fails then at least you tried. YouTube is also good for quick user guides and hacks. Got me out of ticket situations several times.

bunningsbunny Mon 10-Jul-17 22:59:23

My replies have got a bit long (sorry) so here's the first half and I'll finish it off tomorrow. I've also stuck some pictures on Twitter and Instagram.

Why did you want to visit Bunnings in Milton Keynes?
We regularly popped into Homebase (which Bunnings has replaced) and B&Q for all sorts of bits and pieces (bits for the garden, paint, picture frames, lawn mower, bits of wood, cushions, garden furniture etc) so were keen to go and see what Bunnings was all about, what it's products and prices were like, and to see if it was going to be a useful shop to have locally.

What did you enjoy about it?
It was fun to explore the new store and see how different it was from previously. As it was Grand Opening Weekend there were lots of things happening that there wouldn't be normally, that the dc really enjoyed... We got there at lunch time so bought sausages in a slice of bread for lunch (Yes! they had the aforementioned Sausage Sizzle grin) Sausages were very nice if a bit peppery but we all ate them with gusto and fortified ourselves before venturing inside.

Inside was incredibly busy - I would hope that it would be a little calmer on an ordinary weekend. Walking in is quite overwhelming - there is a lot of stock and the shelves go up high and there's not a lot of space. As it was all new and people weren't sure where to go, plus were looking at what was going on or stopping to talk to the information people it felt congested, a feeling increased by the heat (it was a very hot sunny day outside). I too had some problems finding the right people to get the voucher from but the people I asked were very helpful and I ended up with my voucher, having left dh and the dc to go exploring... Phones were a necessity to find each other, especially with all the people - I could still be wandering around looking for them now if I hadn't had them. I did see one little girl that had been separated from her parents in the melee - a couple of staff spotted her pretty quickly, spoke to her and wandered off, I assume to the customer information point. Given how easy it was to get split up in the crowds, it was good to see them on the ball but maybe there could have been a signposted meeting point too.

As an opening event it was done very well - there was free popcorn in one aisle, free face painting, free candyfloss and free balls being given away inside the main shop. I think there might have been other stuff too - we looked down a lot of aisles but as the dc wanted to go and do different things we split up at some points. DS2 had his face painted which surprised me - he doesn't usually like it. However he was very excited about the opportunity and chose to be a bunny - because he likes bunnies and it sounds like Bunnings grin There were at least 5 if not 6 face painters and they were getting through the children in good time so we didn't have to wait long at all.

I wanted to spend some of my voucher on a plant - so we spent a while exploring the garden centre part. There were some beautiful flowers (I'd love to go back another day with my big camera - they'd make some gorgeous macro shots!) but I eventually settled on a Passionflower - more than I'd usually spend on a single plant (it was £10) but I do love them so I'm keeping my fingers crossed it will grow well in my garden. They had lots of lovely smaller bedding plants that were much cheaper, particularly some amazing dahlias that looked sturdy and were beautiful, unusual colours. DH disappeared into the depths of the other side of the garden centre bit and emerged with some gravel and bricks that he wanted, as well as calling me over to look at some little sheds and greenhouses that he liked the look of - and he spotted that their awkward-to-carry big box packaging had a useful handle on it which impressed him. A giant canopy has sprung up over half of the garden centre bit - so was nice to find a bit of shade on a hot day and I'm sure that it will be appreciated on wet days too grin

DS2 was very keen to go on the indoor play frame by the garden centre but it was busy, as was the little cafe next to it. So I've promised him that we will go back soon for him to have a go when it's not as crowded. It was nice to see that it was for 4-12 year olds - recent ones I have seen in other places have been for little children - about the under 6s - so I've had to drag disappointed kids (9 & 12) past them - it's nice to see something for this age group. There was also a colouring table out next to it for little ones, along with a Bunnings person looking after it, which was well stocked and had a row of happy kids along it.

bunningsbunny Mon 10-Jul-17 23:10:40

Errrr - how many photos do you want? I have too many lots grin

Previous post:
1 - the new Bunnings
2 - the sausage sizzle
3 - inside - a random aisle, one of the few that didn't have too many people in so snapped to give a good idea of quite how high they have managed to pile up the shelves!

This post:
1 - some cute garden ornaments for anyone that has been inspired by the Kestrel thread and has dc in a class named after cats, elephants, penguins, sheep, tigers etc
2 - thoughtful packaging - helpful handles on things that are diffcult to carry
3 - The garden centre bit - now has a large covered area, over the bits with the not-plants in. Lots of lovely plants that I could have spent a lot of money in (but as it was very very hot and I didn't fancy going home to start gardening, I managed to resist this time!)

bunningsbunny Mon 10-Jul-17 23:14:17

Like I said - beautiful flowers!

bunningsbunny Mon 10-Jul-17 23:34:46

Special features laid on for the grand opening weekend included:

1 - face painting (plenty of them, doing a fast, efficient but friendly job, no long queues which can often happen)

2 = Peppa and George Pig. My dc are a bit old so nipped to take a picture = the little ones watching seemed to be enjoying the story.

3 - A fun fair! Free rides (although the Helter Skelter seemed a bit scary - the ones that I've seen recently have had much higher sides on the slide bit!), free hoopla and hook a duck with prizes to be won (Bunnings balls or water bottles), a big bouncy castle and an ice cream van with free ice creams... Very impressed that they were letting people choose whatever ice cream they wanted (even things like Magnums or Haribo ones) and not just offering a basic Mr Whippy - and even that would have been really good). Really felt like they were determined to think of as many things as possible to make it feel like a grand opening event - it wasn't just a balloon and mini pack of sweets for the kids, there was lots that everyone could enjoy.

emptywishingwell Tue 11-Jul-17 00:06:43

Attendee -

Why did you want to visit Bunnings in Milton Keynes?

I wanted to visit as we have just moved house and no longer have a rental so finally get the freedom to decorate and make the house our own. I have not been inspired by other shops plus I like a nosy at new shops

What did you enjoy about it?
Really loved all the things they had on for kids such as free rides, popcorn and candy floss. Especially as it was free as they put a lot of effort into it. It was a very rare shopping trip where my children didn't argue or moan as they had so much fun.
I liked the range of products and there were lots of products that I have not seen anywhere else. Everything was neat, tidy and well stocked. Staff and customer service was brilliant.

Did it inspire you? If yes, in what ways?
The range of products inspired me the most as I have found new ideas on improvements I will be making in the future to our new home. The range also helped me identify useful little things that I need but don't usually think about or get round to buying as they are not always easily available elsewhere.

What did you spend your £20 on?

I spent my £20 on an Easter island figure plant pot which I am very pleased with. Its my first purchase for our new garden where is the first time we have had a garden. It was such a hard choice as I wanted so many things but it's a good first step to a little corner of paradise that I hope to create using what I found during my visit.

Do you think you’d return to the new Bunnings store when you were after home improvement or gardening products?
Yes definitely. I have seen quite a few bits that I will be going back to buy.

How would you describe the store to someone who had never been?

Homebase or b and q but better. Has all sorts of useful things and a wide range of products.

Would also like to add some other good points -

The staff were all so friendly, helpful and very attentive. Always checking if we needed anything or making nice small talk when passing.
The layout was easy to navigate and everything was tidy.
I noticed they also do workshops/demonstrations which is nice as I haven't seen this in other shops.
The play area was small but looked nice, there were benches to sit on for the play area and in the cafe area there were colouring sheets and pens for children.
They have a huge stack of boxes good for packing breakables etc in.
Lots of products built for display so you can see the size etc.
Although it was extremely busy we didn't have to queue and checkout was fast and efficient.

Only cons were the size of the parking spaces as I found them to be quite small, especially if your trying to load up a car. Also the cafe was very small.

Really enjoyed our visit and look forward to returning.

Rosehips Tue 11-Jul-17 07:07:58

My home improvement tip- buy a roll of cheap lining paper to paint paint samples on so you can do large ones you can move around the room

sharond101 Tue 11-Jul-17 13:18:17

Non attendee. Extend the lifespan of a room by updating the accessories like cushions and pictures. Looks brand new!

Pikmin Tue 11-Jul-17 16:20:01

Well I went but not as a mumsnetter and was impressed by the effort they went to, and all the free things, son had an ice cream and candyfloss and I got my new key.
My home improvement tip would be to have seasonal reshuffles of rooms, like warmer rugs or throws, moving the sofa nearer the fire etc, it means you clean behind things and also feels like a change.

indesit12345 Tue 11-Jul-17 18:27:50

Keep a security bit set, possibly with around 100 pieces, that way, if a piece of your modern equipment breaks, or needs undoing, then security bit sets are screwdriver/ratchet pieces (like a different type of screwdriver head, instead of cross head for example) which can be used to fix your equipment. For example, we had a lawnmower, mowed over the wire, wire needed stripping and fed back into the appliance, however usual screwdrivers do not accommodate this type of problem. In which case you may be waiting to do the lawn again, until you get a security bit set.

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