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How to shop at B&Q and other DIY stores for items this Easter

Easter is usually prime time for some DIY or gardening but lockdown has made that difficult if you don’t have what you need. We reveal your options among the big chains for getting your hands on some DIY or garden work essentials in a safely socially-distanced way. 

All the leading British DIY chains, except Screwfix, have closed their stores – but if you have an independent shop locally and are desperate to get that job done this weekend, it might be worth checking. 

Meanwhile, some of the big names including B&Q are taking online orders and doing click and collect services, but be warned there were queues of more than an hour to even get into the B&Q website and order on Good Friday. 

At one stage yesterday, more than 317,000 people were waiting to buy items, and B&Q told customers not to arrive at its stores until they got an email instructing them to – and not just an order confirmation.

B & queue: DIY giant B&Q has closed its stores but is offering safely socially-distanced online click and collect, however, shoppers reported spending an hour waiting to get onto the website properly on Good Friday

In the coronavirus lockdown, do-it-yourself and hardware stores were included in the list of retailers permitted to remain open. 

All the leading British DIY chains, except Screwfix, have closed their stores – but if you have an independent shop locally and are desperate to get that job done this weekend, it might be worth checking.

Anecdotally, some independent DIY and hardware stores are choosing to stay open – but do observe distancing etiquette if you use them. Likewise, some local garden centres are offering delivery and even click and collect, though they are likely to be very busy.

You can still order online from the main UK DIY stores including Wickes, Screwfix, Homebase and B&Q. While they offer a ‘next day’ option, deliveries may take longer than usual and ranges available will be reduced. 

In the case of B&Q and Screwfix there is still a limited click & collect service running (see below). Here, we look at which stores are open and which are not and the kind of restrictions in place.

B&Q

B&Q stores are closed and will remain so for the time being, the company said, but customers can still order items online. 

People can continue to use the click & collect service, but the range available is reduced to ‘home repair and maintenance essentials’. These include hardware, plumbing, electricals, central heating and boiler parts, building supplies, tools, security and light bulbs.

While they aim to have a ‘next day’ collection service, B&Q said that due to ‘extremely high demand’, orders are taking up to a few days to process. 

The click & collect service works over the Easter weekend, from 8am to 5pm, with the exception for Easter Sunday, when stores across England, Wales and Northern Ireland are closed. Scottish stores however remain open for click & collect on Easter Sunday too.  

Customers can pick up the items they bought online from the parking area of their local B&Q store, where a member of staff will bring the product close to their car.

‘The range will be limited for our Click & Collect service to ensure we do everything we can to limit unnecessary purchases and ensure our customers and colleagues are protected from needless contact,’ B&Q said. 

A ‘fuller product range’ may soon be available for home delivery, as B&Q said they were working on it. 

Deliveries will be left by customers’ front door instead of being brought inside the house. 

B&Q chief executive Graham Bell said: ‘We’ve been working hard to adapt our business to meet our obligations as an essential retailer, while keeping our colleagues safe and continuing to meet our customers’ needs. 

‘We’re urging our customers to follow all the Government’s social distancing guidelines and to shop responsibly for essential needs only.

‘We’re seeing extremely high demand and doing everything we can to manage this.’ 

DIY cravings: Some retailers deemed essential are allowed to stay open during the lockdown, and DIY stores are among those

DIY cravings: Some retailers deemed essential are allowed to stay open during the lockdown, and DIY stores are among those

Homebase

Homebase had initially told customers they could still shop in its stores as its out of town locations made it easier to observe social distancing rules. 

However, stores are now ‘temporarily’ closed and the company said it has had to suspend its store collection service ‘due to unforeseen high demand’. 

Home deliveries are still working though.

The company said: ‘With safety as our first priority, we have taken the decision to continue to operate online only, and our home delivery service has been adapted to keep our teams safe during this time. 

‘For the time being our stores will remain closed to customers and we’ll let you know as soon as we reopen.’ 

Homebase said it has had to temporarily suspend its store collection service 'due to unforeseen high demand'

Homebase said it has had to temporarily suspend its store collection service ‘due to unforeseen high demand’

Wickes

Wickes stores, which are owned by Travis Perkins, are closed but the retailer has said its click & collect service and home delivery are still working.

A member of staff ‘clearly sign posted’ will be at the store entrance managing click & collect orders, Wickes said, adding that shoppers will be sent clear instructions once they make the purchase. 

However, due to particularly high demand, Wickes said it is unlikely they can provide next day delivery ‘on most lines and locations’.     

‘As these are particularly busy periods for us, availability may at times be limited so please bear with us,’ the company said. 

Screwfix

Screwfix said most of its stores are open, but only for ‘essential’ click & collect orders and are operating at new reduced hours. Its website has been updated to reflect these ‘essential’ products.

Opening hours are mostly 8am to 4pm, Monday to Saturday, and 9am to 4pm on Sundays, although some stores have reduced opening hours further because of low staff levels.   

Customers can still order items for home delivery, but Screwfix said deliveries may be delayed and product ranges may be limited. 

Screfix said most of its stores are open, but only for 'essential' click & collect orders

Screfix said most of its stores are open, but only for ‘essential’ click & collect orders

The company said: ‘Screwfix is now only operating a Home Delivery and Click & Collect service.

‘Stores have reduced hours for Click & Collect orders of essential purchases only, across limited lines. Customers should wait for an SMS confirming that their order is ready. 

‘Unless essential, we are asking customers to stay at home and use our home delivery service.’ 

 

 

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