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Disastrous Currys Delivery

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I bought a £300 washing machine from Currys and was told by the salesperson that the item would be unpackaged on arrival. My paperwork confirmed this.



On the delivery morning of 7th July, the delivery people 'helpfully' positioned the washer by the gap it was was intended for at the far end of my narrow galley kitchen, but then rushed off. I was so pleased that they had lifted it over the most narrow part of the kitchen (between my cooker and the radiator) that I didn't call them back to insist on the unpacking. Big mistake! After they'd driven off I realised it was SIDEWAYS to the hole it was meant to go in. Had the machine been unpacked prior to this, then this problem would have been immediately apparent (or would not have happened in the first place).


When I called the number for deliveries they completely denied part of the deal was to unpack the machine - unless I'd paid extra to have it connected. They refused point blank to ask the delivery people to return and reposition the machine ... so I was left with a pretty-much insurmountable problem of an extremely heavy item plonked sideways in a narrow space in my kitchen – I couldn’t even gain access to my sink!


I rang Currys’ Customer Service, who said the only thing they would be prepared to do was refund the £24.43 cost of delivery, and I should turn up in person at Currys Cambridge Retail Park to get this refund. When I arrived there - that same morning - the branch was closed for refurbishments! I was told by a friendly builder that if it was just a refund I was after, then the Currys in Cambridge Lion Yard would do it for me.


After an extra 20 mins cycle ride, sure enough, they did. The manager was very angry about the delivery company - not only because they hadn't unpacked the washing machine, but that they’d also failed to take out the transit bolts (which stop the drum from turning). He said if I'd been able to start the machine with them still in it would have bunny-hopped across the kitchen, tearing up the floor and ruining itself in the process! He claimed he was going to bring this up at an audit meeting that very week, and also expressed the opinion that their contract with the delivery company should be reviewed.


Meanwhile, I still had a washing machine blocking half my kitchen.


Colleagues from work, on hearing my tale of woe, kindly offered to help lift the washing machine out of where it was – quite literally - boxed in. But washing machines have concrete at their base for stability and it soon became apparent that it was impossible to lift such a heavy item to hip-height to extract it for unpacking and repositioning. I even doubt that the two burly deliverers could have completed this feat, as it’s one thing to lower such a bulky item into a tight space, but quite another to extricate it. Even if there had been space enough to do the lifting, the health and safety implications for myself and my colleagues could have been grim. I was very angry with Currys for leaving me in this situation.


The upshot is that I was obliged to remove the oven and grill doors from my cooker so that the washing machine could be shuffled out of the kitchen without leaving the ground.


However, when it came to reattaching the cooker’s doors the oven door proved impossible to put back due to metal screw plates behind the facia having slipped down, resulting in the screws not having anything to screw into other than the outer, looser holes which have no thread.


On contacting the helpline for my cooker (bought less than a month ago for £200) they quoted me a £99 call-out charge and possibly even more to pay if replacement parts were required on top of this!


Less the refunded delivery charge, this meant I would be at least £74.57 out-of-pocket if I ever wanted to use my now open-air oven again! I don't have that kind of money right now as I moved from a furnished flat to unfurnished accommodation just over a month ago, with all the expense this entails.


I put all of the above - and more - in writing and hand-delivered it to the manager of the Currys Lion Yard Store. In it, I suggested that as Currys' deliverers caused me so many problems through their 'dereliction of duty' (or, perhaps more likely, because Currys didn't make it clear to them what their deliveries are suppposed to entail) - that they should as a good will gesture stump up at least the £74.57 so I didn’t lose out monetarily. Or maybe they could send an engineer of their own to re-attach my oven door? Whichever way, I begged them to be swift about it.


That was on 8th July and I did not receive any response so on 15th July I also emailed a copy of the letter’s text to their Customer Services. Yesterday (23rd July), I received a letter which admitted that the deliverers were meant to unpack the washing machine, but that they would not be offering me any help or compensation. No real reason given.

How am I going to convince them that they're being completely unreasonable and that no way should a delivery done in their name end up with someone losing the use of their cooker's oven for 2 1/2 weeks (and counting) and having to find £75+ from nowhere to put it right?


Funnily enough, before I made my purchase I was asking a Cambridge friend where she'd recommend going in town to buy a washing machine … and she warned me off Currys because she said their after-sales care was non-existent. An online website, www.reviewcentre.com, (where I’ve left an appropriately damning - but truthful - review) has an overall customer satisfaction of 1.2 out of 5 for Currys … If only I'd checked this site beforehand or taken my friend’s advice and gone to John Lewis!!

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How am I going to convince them that they're being completely unreasonable and that no way should a delivery done in their name end up with someone losing the use of their cooker's oven for 2 1/2 weeks (and counting) and having to find £75+ from nowhere to put it right?


By making your next letter, a Letter Before Action, and go ahead and issue a summons if they continue to refuse to put right the part of the contract they have breached.

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