Essential reading for retailers and suppliers in the home improvement market

News Archive October 2018

Rye DIY re-opens under Trade Paints banner 30 October 2018

The independent DIY store, which has traded in the town for 25 years, closed its doors in September and has been taken over by Trade Paints, re-opening as the sixth branch within the decorating group yesterday. Rye DIY announced its closure on social ...


Woodcote Green sold to Dobbies Garden Centres 30 October 2018

Following speculation over the future of the Woodcote Green Garden Centre site, it has been announced today that Wyevale Garden Centres (‘WGC’) has agreed the sale of the centre to Dobbies Garden Centre Centres.The news follows the announcement that ...


Local high streets to gain £675m for redevelopment in 2018 Budget 30 October 2018

The Chancellor addressed Parliament yesterday, announcing the Autumn Budget for 2018, where he acknowledged the High Street is "under pressure as never before" and said he believed the tax system for the digital age must be revised.Commenting ...


BHETA launches 2019 National Home Improvement Month   29 October 2018

Following the success of its inaugural consumer-facing promotion this year - National Home Improvement Week - the British Home Enhancement Trade Association (BHETA) secures backing to launch its 2019 follow up initiative and extend the campaign ...


Houseplant sales continue to climb in September 29 October 2018

Garden centres across the country reported that sales remained strong in their houseplant departments last month, with predictions that colourful indoor plants, such as poinsettias, cylamens and hyacinths that the category will help give the ...


Singles' Day forcasted to double in the UK 29 October 2018

Parcel comparison site Parcel Hero believes British sales on Singles Day are likely to soar in value thanks to the ideal timing of the event, which lands on a Sunday this year. Singles' day was born in Nanjing University where the large number of ...


Lechuza secures major online listings 29 October 2018

German planter manufacturer, Lechuza has extended its reach, with its products now stocked on crocus.co.uk, Waitrose & Partners Garden website and RHS Plants OnlineLechuza key account manager Ian Riggs said of the new retail listings: “...


Werner supports Get A Grip campaign 29 October 2018

The work at height and access equipment manufacturer, Werner Co, is pledging its support to the Ladder Association for its latest ladder safety campaign.As part of Werner Co’s commitment to improving safety standards across the industry, it is ...


Wilko re-opens Bishops Stortford store 26 October 2018

Wilko has re-opened its doors at Bishops Stortford, in Jackson Square, after refurbishment. Queues outside the new store started forming at 8am with more than 75 shoppers keen to get a first look at the newly transformed wilko store and take home ...


SCS pulls out of House of Fraser as concession sales halve 26 October 2018

Upholstered furniture and flooring retailer, Sofa Carpet Specialist (SCS Group plc) has announced it will close the 27 outlets it operates within House of Fraser stores after reporting a 52.5% decline in concession sales for the quarter and says the ...


Debenhams confirms further closures after “tough year” 25 October 2018

Following much speculation ahead of Debenhams’ latest trading update today, the department store chain announced it would be closing 50 unprofitable stores across the UK over the next three to five years, as digital channels strengthen and the ...


Crown Paints announces ambitious environmental plans 25 October 2018

Crown Paints has set out its ambitious environmental targets for the year ahead and looks back at the successes the company has achieved in 2017 as part of its annual Sustainability Report.The report brings together all aspects of Crown Paints’ ...


Brexit uncertainty triggers huge price drops on DIY products 25 October 2018

In the past week, online retailers have upped their number of offers on home improvement products by 38%, as well as slashing prices on thousands of home products much sooner than would be expected in the run up to Black Friday.Prices of home ...


Amazon will create 20,000 seasonal roles in the lead up to Christmas 24 October 2018

Across its UK network, Amazon has announced it will be creating an additional 20,000 roles.Earlier this month, Amazon announced that from 1 November it is increasing its minimum wage to £10.50 for the London area and £9.50 for the rest of the UK for ...


Pricing competition in “tough DIY market” puts the squeeze on Wickes 23 October 2018

Travis Perkins’ consumer division saw like-for-like (LFL) sales slide 4.2% in Q3, as Wickes reported declines in both core DIY and kitchen and bathroom categories.Announcing the results, Travis Perkins said “the market environment in UK DIY remains ...


Drews The Ironmongers to close after 87 years 23 October 2018

The much-loved family-run business, which has operated in Reading for nearly nine decades, will cease trading after Christmas, with 26 people set to lose their jobs.Drews made the announcement on Facebook, stating that the business was no longer ...


Fire door safety ignored despite Grenfell tragedy 22 October 2018

Despite the shocking tragedy of the Grenfell fire in London last summer, an online poll has revealed that 50% of tradespeople don’t feel confident in advising customers on fire door safety.Despite extensive media coverage about the dangers of ...


Report reveals regional interior trends for 2019 22 October 2018

Property specialists, Sellhousefast.uk has explored the interior trends favoured by different regions across the UK (in 2017), in addition to discovering what interior trends have been most popular in 2018, and what can be swapped for next year. To ...


Jewson Wokingham relocates to brand new, larger unit 19 October 2018

Increased customer demand has seen the builders’ merchant move its Wokingham branch from Barkham Road to a new-build 2,936sq m site on Molly Millars Lane.The new branch also has better access, meaning it can handle more customer deliveries and ...


Almost 5% of total UK shopper spend is on non-food retail 18 October 2018

The top 50 UK shopping centres account for £17.4billion in shopper spending per year – almost 5% of total UK shopper spend on non-food retail, food service and leisure, reflecting the continued importance of these locations to UK retail. Global Data’...


Online retail sales fall to lowest level this year 18 October 2018

UK online retail sales were up just 7.5% YOY last month – recording the lowest September growth since 2014, as shoppers are left counting the pennies after summer and hold out for Black Friday deals ...


Lakeland heads up BHETA forum in November 18 October 2018

Lakeland buying and merchandising director Samm Swain tops the bill at BHETA’s networking forum next month, with presentations from GFK and BIRA. The event on November 1 will see Samm Swain present her views on the current market, latest consumer ...


Developers pull out of Woodcote Green sale 17 October 2018

As bids roll in for the Wyevale estate, rumours within the garden industry suggest that developers who had agreed to buy the Woodcote Green site a few weeks ago in order to build houses, have now pulled out of the deal. According to one source, the ...


Westland Horticulture acquires Gardman 17 October 2018

Westland Horticulture has announced it has acquired established garden products provider, Gardman group, and taken the company out of administration. The purchase includes all trading assets, stock, infrastructure and Gardman brands, which include ...


John Lewis steps up customer service with new Cheltenham store 17 October 2018

The new pilot store set to open its doors to the public tomorrow will offer new services to enhance the shopper experience, from private after-hour shopping evenings, to personal shopping and home design consultations, whilst store staff have even ...


Consumer price inflation drops sharply in September says ONS 17 October 2018

According to figures released this morning by the ONS, consumer price index inflation fell by 0.3 percentage points to 2.4% in the year to September 2018, more than reversing the rise in August.New analysis of the prices of the 136,095 goods and ...


High street footfall declines for second month in a row 15 October 2018

The latest figures from Springboard show retail footfall was down 1.7% on last year in September, with the high street posting a fall of -2.2%, as high-profile retail collapses have made consumers nervous about making big purchases with major high ...


BHETA announces new DIY members and export mission to Romania 15 October 2018

Bartoline and Cromar are the latest companies to join the British Home Enhancement Trade Association (BHETA), as the organisation also announces a new trade mission to Romania to help further the export ambitions of its members.Bartoline Limited, a ...


Local DIY store announces expansion 15 October 2018

After 28 years of business, GJ’s has fought back against the high-street demise by carrying out an expansion plan - almost tripling its original size. The winning formula of great customer service, discounted prices and an extended product offering, ...


Loving Pets Europe wins Young Exporter of the Year 2018 15 October 2018

The UK/European operation of Loving Pets has been awarded another well deserved accolade, an award by the British Export Association for Young Exporter of the Year 2018.The company has been bringing innovative products and solutions in what is an ...


‘Generation Rent’ would pay £72 more a month if they could decorate 12 October 2018

Landlords are at risk of missing out on more than £850 in rental income a year by not letting their tenants decorate their homes, with bold statement walls a favourite trend amongst renters.New research has found that 20% of renters would pay extra,...


Sofology opens its 42nd store in Plymouth 12 October 2018

Continuing their exciting expansion, Sofology has opened its 42nd store at Gateway Retail Park, Plymouth today.The Plymouth store marks the first South West opportunity, establishing the continued success of Sofology as a brand. Located over a 20,...


Nation’s interest in wildlife creates opportunities this winter 12 October 2018

Wyevale’s ‘Garden Trend Report’ reveals that 82% of the British public want to attract more wildlife to their garden, with opportunities for retailers in the category during the colder months ...


September retail sales suffer says BRC 11 October 2018

In September, UK retail sales decreased by 0.2% on a like-for-like basis from September 2017, when they had increased 1.9% from the preceding year.On a total basis, sales increased 0.7% in September, against an increase of 2.3% in September 2017. ...


Wilko hit by £65m loss but is "excited for new opportunities" 11 October 2018

High street retailer Wilko has announced a loss of £65 million after "exceptional items and movements of derivative financial instruments", the company has reported.However the business has seen sales rise 7.1% as the online offer expands and own ...


Wyevale Garden Centres sells five of its largest garden centres to Dobbies 8 October 2018

Wyevale Garden Centres (WGC) has announced the sale of five garden centres to Dobbies Garden Centres. The centres include Gloucester; Heighley Gate; Huntingdon; Woodbridge and Woodlands.Chief Executive of WGC, Roger Mclaughlan said: “We are pleased ...


UK plumbers’ merchants market worth over £4.2bn 4 October 2018

As Buildbase announces the launch of Plumbingbase within its estate and Screwfix reveals its specialist trade counters for plumbers are driving LFL sales growth, a new report from AMA Research reports that the plumbers’ merchants market was worth an ...


Topps lifts profit forecast but remains cautious 3 October 2018

In a trading update for its full-year results, Topps Tiles has reported improved trading in Q4 and said pre-tax profits will be ahead of previous expectations but the group says it remains cautious in its outlook and is maintaining a tight control ...


Walton Flooring Centre eyes expansion with £250k finance package 3 October 2018

The Liverpool-based flooring company - a 2018 DIY Week Award winner - has set its sights on ambitious growth plans, with a move to a new 36,000sq ft unit in Huyton next year after securing a quarter of a million pound bespoke finance package ....


UK pet industry toasts a successful year at PetQuip awards event 2 October 2018

Around 200 luminaries representing the UK and international retailer and supplier pet sector attended the 2018 PetQuip Awards & Dinner party held on 23 September. The sixth edition of this annual event took place in the Ludlow Suite at the ...


Buildbase launches Plumbingbase 2 October 2018

Builders’ merchant, Buildbase has launched a dedicated plumbing and heating business within 44 branches to help create a one-stop shop for tradesmen.Plumbingbase will be clearly branded alongside Hirebase, Electricbase and, Kitchen and Bathroom ...


Tile Giant teams up with with Homes & Gardens Magazine to launch exclusive range 1 October 2018

Tile Giant has signed a deal to launch an exclusive range of tiles curated by the leading consumer decorating title.The six-strong capsule collection is set to launch this month both through the Tile Giant website and from selected stores nationwide....


BREAKING NEWS: Akzo Nobel finalises sale of specialty chemicals business for €10.1billion 1 October 2018

Following the announcement its decorative paints business had completed the acquisition of Fabryo earlier today, Akzo Nobel has just announced the completion of the sale of its specialty chemicals business to The Carlyle Group and GIC.In a statement ...


Villaggio Verge joins BHETA 1 October 2018

Another housewares company has joined the British Home Enhancement Trade Association (BHETA) it has been announced, Villaggio Verde.Villaggio Verde is an RHS gold medal winning grower of olive trees with 20 years’ experience supplying trees to ...


Aldi UK plans to open 130 new stores 1 October 2018

Aldi, has announced record results for its last financial year, with sales continuing to increase in 2018 as growing numbers of British shoppers switch from the "Big Four" - Tesco, Asda, Sainsburys and Morrisons.Sales in the UK and Ireland rose 16.4%...


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