The Range

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Pete
Posts: 7241
Joined: Fri 15 Aug, 2003 13.36
Location: Dundee

So, we've just had one of these things open in Dundee and I'm somewhat baffled as to what the purpose of the place is.

It seems to be a jack of all trades where the majority of the stuff is just utter shite. The canvases are the ugliest I've ever seen in my life and the kitchenwear is of the worst "MOAR WORDS ON THINGS" type. Yet despite that they seem to have an excellent arts and stationery dept which is far more reasonably priced than either staples or hobbycraft.

Their Christmas decorations are probably the most hideous I've ever seen, the tree inside an upside down umbrella spraying polystyrene snow over all and sundry was a particular lowlight.

Opinions please...
"He has to be larger than bacon"
wells
Posts: 742
Joined: Sun 31 Jul, 2005 14.52

I've been in a couple and it's one of those stores that you can't really describe, it's sort of a Wilkinson mixed with Pound Stretcher mixed with B&Q mixed with Staples mixed with DFS.
cwathen
Posts: 1158
Joined: Fri 15 Aug, 2003 17.28

The Range is something of a legend in the south west, and whatever tat that may knock out, you can't help but respect it as a business. It's founder Chris Dawson (who still serves as CEO now) started from very humble beginnings, as a person who grew up in a council house (where his mother still lives) and left school with no qualifications. He started his business empire by selling stuff on street corners in Plymouth in the 1980's. In 1989 he opened the first 'The Range' store in Plymouth (which still trades from the same site today) and the head office is still based in a tatty old unit on one of Plymouth's less glamorous industrial estates, not because they can't afford anything better, but because they see no need to spend money on something which doesn't deliver any return.

The business has since expanded at an ever increasing rate - they have quadrupled their store count in the last 5 years, and have opened 10 stores in the last 6 months alone taking them to 85.

They may sell chavtastic crap, but they're good at what they do.
scottishtv
Posts: 643
Joined: Thu 01 Apr, 2004 15.36
Location: Edinburgh, Scotland

cwathen wrote:The business has since expanded at an ever increasing rate - they have quadrupled their store count in the last 5 years, and have opened 10 stores in the last 6 months alone taking them to 85.
So I see:
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Dr Lobster*
Posts: 2013
Joined: Sat 30 Aug, 2003 20.14

I've only been in the range a couple of times. I can't cope with it. The layout is so baffling and nonsensical to me that I can't find anything without a brute force traversal of the entire store, which of course I'm not going to do because it doesn't seem worth it.

I agree with your analysis, Pete - seems like loads of utter shite, almost like an out of town Wilkinson.
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Pete
Posts: 7241
Joined: Fri 15 Aug, 2003 13.36
Location: Dundee

Wilkinson with delusions of grandeur was how I described it to someone the other day
"He has to be larger than bacon"
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WillPS
Posts: 2087
Joined: Tue 22 Apr, 2008 18.32
Location: Carlton
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I've never been impressed.
cwathen wrote: and the head office is still based in a tatty old unit on one of Plymouth's less glamorous industrial estates, not because they can't afford anything better, but because they see no need to spend money on something which doesn't deliver any return.
Sounds like a wonderful employer.
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Whataday
Posts: 327
Joined: Fri 22 Aug, 2003 00.08
Location: Cardiff
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I remember in the 90s one of the first stores opened in Newport as 'CDS Superstores' in a former Texas Homecare store. The interior walls were painted with very clear red, white and blue Texas branding but it wasn't changed for years. It was such a mess.

Then a few years later they became The Range and really got their identity together. I'm not sure why anyone can say they don't know what the stores want to be. It's basically a Home & Garden superstore, like Homebase crossed with Poundstretcher. A bit like the old Woolco/Big W format.
tweedledum
Posts: 5
Joined: Thu 04 Jul, 2013 18.35

The one in Carlisle is quite messy. Their is always cardboard boxes all over the place, and I see recently they have got this Millions sweet dispenser thing and they are all over the floor
simonipswich
Posts: 40
Joined: Tue 21 May, 2013 14.11
Location: Ipswich

Pete wrote:So, we've just had one of these things open in Dundee and I'm somewhat baffled as to what the purpose of the place is.

It seems to be a jack of all trades where the majority of the stuff is just utter shite. The canvases are the ugliest I've ever seen in my life and the kitchenwear is of the worst "MOAR WORDS ON THINGS" type. Yet despite that they seem to have an excellent arts and stationery dept which is far more reasonably priced than either staples or hobbycraft.

Their Christmas decorations are probably the most hideous I've ever seen, the tree inside an upside down umbrella spraying polystyrene snow over all and sundry was a particular lowlight.

Opinions please...
I have to agree the store is utter shite. We have one in Ipswich, the staff look like they should be licking windows and some of their customers are like Zombies of the Dead!
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WillPS
Posts: 2087
Joined: Tue 22 Apr, 2008 18.32
Location: Carlton
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simonipswich wrote:
Pete wrote:So, we've just had one of these things open in Dundee and I'm somewhat baffled as to what the purpose of the place is.

It seems to be a jack of all trades where the majority of the stuff is just utter shite. The canvases are the ugliest I've ever seen in my life and the kitchenwear is of the worst "MOAR WORDS ON THINGS" type. Yet despite that they seem to have an excellent arts and stationery dept which is far more reasonably priced than either staples or hobbycraft.

Their Christmas decorations are probably the most hideous I've ever seen, the tree inside an upside down umbrella spraying polystyrene snow over all and sundry was a particular lowlight.

Opinions please...
I have to agree the store is utter shite. We have one in Ipswich, the staff look like they should be licking windows and some of their customers are like Zombies of the Dead!
As opposed to what other kind of zombies?
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