B&Q has now reopened 155 stores across the UK where it will implement strict social distancing measures, four weeks since closing its stores following the coronavirus lockdown.
Since 23rd March when the UK lockdown was announced, B&Q switched to making its website, diy.com, as its primary store, closing all brick-and-mortar stores for browsing and purchasing, offering only a contact-free Click + Collect service from local stores, and a limited home delivery service.
As a hardware store, B&Q falls under the government’s list of ‘essential’ businesses and is allowed to remain open throughout lockdown, however, it proceeded to close stores for the safety of its staff and customers.
In the last few weeks, B&Q has ‘watched other essential retailers support social distancing in their stores’, and is now following best practice by reopening selected stores.
The retailer first trialled 14 stores at the weekend, followed by 61 stores on Wednesday and a further 80 on Thursday.
‘Similar to shopping at supermarkets, we’ve introduced social distancing controls at our reopened stores. We’re strictly limiting the number of customers in store at any one time, and so you may find you need to queue if you visit the store,’ B&Q explained.
All stores have two metre floor markers throughout and perspex screens have been fitted at checkouts. At these reopened stores, customers can only purchase products that are available to shop and take away in store on the day. The garden centres within these stores, stocking a range of plants, are open for self-service.
There are some restrictions to what’s available in store. Suspended services in these reopened stores are as follows:
- Kitchen and bathroom design
- Paint mixing
- Timber cutting
- Key cutting
Please note, in these stores B&Q will only accept card, gift card and contactless payments. Items will be available for collection at the Click+Collect desk as usual.
Will more stores reopen?
‘We’re unsure on how long our other stores will remain closed and look forward to welcoming you into our stores again as soon as possible,’ says B&Q in the FAQs on its website.
For all remaining closed stores, B&Q’s contact-free Click + Collect service is available for orders placed on diy.com, which means you can collect items ordered online from an allocated parking zone in the car park of your local store. Orders will then be brought to your car for you to load yourself. Home delivery is also available on selected product lines.
Shopping on B&Q online
On B&Q’s website, diy.com, the retailer has a reduced range focusing on customers’ needs during these challenging times. This includes the following:
- Central heating and boiler parts
- Building supplies
- Light bulbs
A limited range of paint is available to purchase, as well as plant bundles. Both products can be ordered using B&Q’s contact-free Click + Collect service from local stores.
‘We know that gardening is important to our customers and their wellbeing. We are also aware of the scale of the challenge COVID-19 presents for the nation’s horticulture industry. We hope the availability of plants using our contact-free Click + Collect service will add a little bit of colour to the gardens of Britain and help our customers and our horticultural partners through this difficult time, while maintaining the safety of our colleagues and customers,’ B&Q said in a statement.
While the range online is restricted, B&Q is continuing to review the product offering. Please note, due to extremely high demand, there is a queuing system to enter the website (currently, you can expect delays of more than two hours), but once you enter there are no time restrictions to browse.
Full list of reopened stores
Ashford; Ashton-Under-Lyne; Aylesbury; Barnsley (Dearne Valley); Basildon; Basingstoke; Birmingham – Erdington, Halesowen & Solihull; Blackburn; Blackpool; Bognor Regis; Bolton; Brighton; Bristol – Longwell Green & Hartcliffe; Burton upon Trent; Bury; Camborne; Cambridge; Cannock; Castleford (Glasshoughton); Chard; Chelmsford; Cheltenham; Chester; Chesterfield; Clacton-on-Sea; Colchester; Coventry – Alvis Retail Park & Brandon Road; Crawley; Crewe; Darlington; Dartford; Derby; Devizes; Doncaster; Dover; Eastleigh; Exeter; Fareham; Farnborough; Gillingham; Gloucester; Great Yarmouth; Grimsby; Halifax; Handforth; Havant; High Wycombe; Huddersfield; Hull – Ferry Lane & St Andrews Quay; Ipswich; Kings Lynn; Leeds – Beeston Ring Road & Killingbeck; Leicester; Leigh; Liverpool – Aintree & Liverpool Shopping Park;
London – Acton, Beckton, Chiswick, Cricklewood, Croydon, Enfield, Greenwich, Leyton, New Malden, Peckham, Sutton & Yeading;
Loughborough; Luton; Macclesfield; Manchester – Cheetham Hill & Trafford Park; Middlesbrough; Milton Keynes; Nelson; Newcastle (Scotswood); Northampton; Northwich; Norwich; Norwich Hall Road; Nottingham – Eastwood; Netherfield & Riverside; Oldham; Peterborough; Plymouth; Portsmouth; Preston (Bamber Bridge); Reading, Romford (Roneo Corner); Romford (Tangent Link); Scunthorpe; Sheffield (Queens Road); Shrewsbury; Slough; Southampton – Hedge End & Nursling; Southend; Speke; St.Helens; Stafford; Stevenage; Stockport; Stockton on Tees; Stoke-On-Trent (Meir Park); Stroud; Sunderland; Sutton in Ashfield; Tamworth; Taunton; Torquay; Tunbridge Wells; Tyne & Wear – North Shields & Washington; Wallasey; Warrington; Watford; Wednesbury; Wellingborough; West Thurrock; Wigan; Yeovil; York – Clifton Moor & Hull Road.
Belfast (Holywood Exchange); Lisburn (Sprucefield); Newtownabbey.
Aberdeen – Bridge Of Don & Garthdee Road; Bishopbriggs; Coatbridge; Dundee; East Kilbride; Edinburgh – Hermiston Gait & Newcraighall; Glasgow – Darnley, Great Western Rd & Parkhead; Inverness; Kirkcaldy; Paisley.
Caerphilly; Cardiff; Cardiff (Culverhouse Cross); Merthyr Tydfil; Newport; Swansea.
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