Stevenage collections

Posting this here rather than in announcements, as it hasn’t been announced on the site yet, but today’s e-mail that showroom collections will end is quite a shock. I wonder if the Society realises how much it will lose in terms of casual sales? Whenever I visit Stevenage to collect a few cases I always seem to come away with £100 or so of unintended purchases. Presumably other Members do the same. At least some of this trade is going to be lost.
Edit - I mean the DISCOUNT of course. Sorry.

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Shiny red vans next I wouldn’t wonder?

It does seem an odd decision to me. I can quite understand that the costs might not add up during lockdown when the showroom is closed, but surely there must still be a saving in normal times as no delivery (either TWS van or external carrier) must be paid for.

Likewise, I used to pick up a few cases and then purchase a few things whilst I was there. Can’t see much point making the trip without an incentive…


I agree that the discount promotes casual sales as well as reducing delivery costs (and demand). I am almost always well over the minimum for free delivery so now I will cost them more (but on the other hand, I can now join in the thread on WS vans).

Combined with the closure of the showroom when others are staying open, this is not good service. Like others, I used other suppliers more during the complete closure last spring: this is not the best way to bring customers back.

The email says that this is just one of ‘some changes to our systems, discounts and policies’, but gives no information about the other changes. I can’t find anything about these (or the showroom discount change) on the website. I have emailed member services to try to get proper information.


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I find it strange too. No clear indication of whether this is permanent or only during lockdown. I would have thought that in normal conditions there would be some saving to be made when people collect wine themselves and therefore a deduction is reasonable. Otherwise there’s not much point going to collect.

Also find the connection to the new IT system a bit alarming too. A deduction of 25p a bottle doesn’t seem very complicated and it seems disappointing that this would be a bit much for the new system to handle.



With only the information on this thread to go on, I can only conclude from first glance that this is the natural progression of them selling bin ends and mystery cases online. They’ve probably also seen a greater engagement with the wider membership because of it.

I also suspect, despite over-optimistic government pronouncements, that social distancing is with us for considerable time to come, and therefore planning for anything but that would be ignoring the facts at hand.


Pardon me?
What email are you referring to? :+1: :dragon:

They almost certainly do. They’ll have done a cost benefit analysis, and while it may seem like a huge deal to a tiny percentage of the membership, the vast majority of members will never go to Stevenage. For them (me) if the Stevenage pick-up and showroom are not cost effective I’d rather the Society not do it for the small number of members who can make use of what is fundamentally a perk.


E-mail titled “Showroom Collections an Update” from Lisa at the Wine Society 15.43 today.

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Are you suggesting that delivery is costless so there is no saving for TWS? Or are you assuming (as I am) that the other unspecified changes are likely to mean higher charges or higher minimum quantities for delivery, as well? As the wines I buy on impulse in the show room don’t appear in ‘my wines’, I suspect that they do NOT have a record of wines bought by those who are collecting.

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Most of the members will never go to Stevenage, unless to a ticketed function.
Those who live within a stones throw of HQ have, like those in London for the AGM have up until Covid-19 had a privilege that had not occurred to me. But with the mystery cases and the Online AGM we have got a sniff of what we were missing and to be honest, I like what I now have democratic access to and I can see what the “locals” had and why they would like it to be reinstated!! :open_mouth:
Maybe about time for some levelling up!?! :clap: :+1: :dragon:


Mostly the latter.

Also that while clearly delivery is not costless, neither is operating a showroom and managing the logistics of the local pick-up. What I’d imagine has happened is that the showroom is not cost effective and is thus being closed. This has the side effect of removing the infrastructure for easy pick-up. While they don’t have a clear idea of who is buying and under what circumstances, they’ll still know how much is being bought in the showroom and they’ll be working with those numbers.


Nice one, not received - will pursue, thanks. :clap: :wink: :dragon:

I think you have misunderstood. The showroom is not closing (or, more precisely, it will reopen):

'We expect to be reopening again for on-the-spot sales as soon as the current restrictions are eased. ’

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Yes, I did indeed misunderstand.

Ending forever or just while the pandemic is on?
If it’s the latter then the question becomes is it an essential service?
And I think we all know what the answer to that is.

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Weird my wines purchased from the show room show up on my wines. I’ve just checked a few from my last visit in the summer and they are there. How odd.


For the vast majority of members they don’t benefit from this discount, should those living local get a cost saving over others?

If it’s not cost effective for the Society to continue offering the discount shouldn’t we be pleased they have taken the action? From time to time in this community there are comments about the society not wasting money, well if this is costing then shouldn’t they do something about that? Especially if other costs are going up?


I find some of the comments here a bit off the mark. Clearly in general terms delivering wine costs something and not delivering it costs less. I don’t know whether 25 pence a bottle is the correct amount but it doesn’t seem unreasonable. I doubt DHL or whoever charge much less than £3 for delivering a box of 12 bottles.
I don’t think collecting wine from the Showroom is a “benefit” or a “privilege”; it may be a convenience for some members. It also encourages members into the Showroom where, as several have said, they tend to buy more than their original order.


I will be open from the outset that I live three hundred odd miles from Stevenage and did my sister not live relatively close by (well, in Herts at least), I doubt I would ever have visited. I therefore won’t miss this benefit. Nor have I received the email so I’m not totally clear what exactly the changes are.
It does seem nowadays with internet shopping to be fairly well established principle that if you spend £x you receive free delivery, in exactly the way TWS offers. I am not however aware of any other merchant offering a discount for collection. I am not totally convinced that offering those within close distance of the showroom effectively a lower price is entirely within the spirit of a cooperative either. That notwithstanding, I’m sure I’d have been a bit miffed if I had been used to taking advantage of the discount!