Anyone who remembers the shed excitement quickly followed by the shed debacle, may be wondering what the final outcome was. Unfortunately the saga is still ongoing, sort of. One of the things I did on my three day weekend was call Wickes, yet again, to ask why we still hadn’t had the promised call from the shed supplier. Obviously, at this point, my patience was wearing fairly thin. After all, how many times can you be promised a call that doesn’t come?
To be fair, the girl I spoke to did at least sound like she knew what she was doing and she apologised which earned her a few brownie points. She also let slip she’d been answering calls from disgruntled would be shed owners for the last three weeks. This didn’t exactly fill me with confidence.
“If you don’t mind holding I’ll give the suppliers a call right now and see if I can find out what’s going on,” she said, “or I could call you back if you like?”
Bearing in mind the previous broken promises for a call back I decided to wait but I had one question to ask before I let her put me on hold.
“Could you tell me the name of the supplier please?”
“They’re called Forest Garden,” she said.
Let’s just say I had plenty of time to Google them while I waited for her to come back to me. It did not make for pleasant reading. On the face of it the company look good. They label themselves ‘The UK’s leading decorative garden timber manufacturers,’ but the words ‘Happy National Shed Week. How do you use your shed: as a tool store or for something more unusual?’ did make me slightly grumpy. They even have a Facebook page but, on closer inspection they are the only people who post on it, obviously comments from their customers are not exactly welcome.
When I found a page of reviews on www.freeindex.co.uk, alarm bells began to ring. The reviews on the Argos website weren’t much better. In fact, every site I found with reviews of them were the same, items not being delivered, items delivered but not correct, items damaged, items falling apart within weeks… No one had anything good to say. It was beginning to sound as if not getting our shed delivered might be a blessing in disguise. This sounds very much like a company just about to go under to me.
Eventually the nice lady from Wickes came back to me to say Forest Garden were still waiting for stock but they might have some in next week and they might be able to deliver ours the week after. At this point MIGHT just wasn’t good enough, especially as I was no longer sure the shed we’d get, if we ever got one, was going to be any better than a cardboard box.
“Actually, I’d like my money back,” I said. “Also, I think you should speak to the people who run your website because they are still advertising these sheds as two week delivery when you are well aware that is never going to happen.”
So the money is now back in our account and I’m pretty sure we had a lucky escape. The problem is, we still don’t have a shed and now we are half afraid to order another because half the companies advertising sheds seem to be getting them from Forest Garden. When I say getting them I’m speaking figuratively obviously because, as far as I can tell, no one is actually getting any sheds at all.
Sadly, Wickes are still advertising the shed as IN STOCK with fourteen day delivery. This has incensed me so much I’ve actually reported them to Trading Standards. After all, advertising something and taking the money for it when you know very well it is not going to be delivered is against the law in this country. Shame on you Wickes and Argos and all the other people still advertising Forest Garden sheds.
For the time being the patio is bare and my dreams of a pretty blue shed are slowly fading into the distance. Anyone know a good chippie, preferably one who can build sheds?