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M&S and BP Point Fingers at Each Other Over Continuing Sale of Fire Risk Disposable BBQs

Published on: 8 Aug, 2022
Updated on: 10 Aug, 2022

The BP Garage at Merrow which contains a M&S convenience store. Image Google Street View

By Martin Giles

The Marks & Spencer decision to stop selling disposable barbeque kits, while the risk of wildfires was so high, was widely publicised and applauded.

So Guildford resident Celia Woodward was shocked to see the items on sale at the M & S store within the BP garage at Merrow yesterday morning (August 7).

She told The Dragon: “We have had several fires in the heathland around Guildford, so it was great to see a news item that Marks & Spencer has extended their ban on the sale of disposable BBQs in their stores throughout the UK, thus joining other responsible retailers such as Aldi and Tesco.

“But there was a display of them right in your face as you walk in the door at their outlet in the BP garage in Merrow.

“The manager, wearing a shirt with M&S embroidered on it claims that they are a “BP product”. He declined to remove them from the display of goods for sale and referred me to a BP customer care line to complain.

The PR hot potato brought conflicting statements for the two national retailers each seeming to indicate it was the other’s responsibility.

BP responded to the complaint from Ms Woodward: “Some of our stores are not owned or operated by BP, therefore to help resolve your query as quickly as possible, in some cases we may need to pass your details over to the independent retailer in order for them to assist you further.”

And in response to an enquiry from The Dragon Marks & Spencer said:  “Having already stopped the sale of disposable barbeques near national parks and in London, M&S last week took the precautionary step to remove them from sale across the UK given the unusually hot and dry weather conditions.

“This included taking action to remove the disposable barbecues from sale in M&S franchise stores.

“BP also has its own range of products and so they control the decisions about stocking these products in their stores.”

 

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