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Halfords left me with locked lump of useless metal

Miles Brignall
Photograph: Toby Melville/Reuters

I bought the Halfords Advanced 6 Drawer Tool Cabinet for my husband for Christmas. It is a large, bulky item, costing £440, and while I ordered it online, I opted for store collection. But when I went to pick it up (with help), it came with only half its packaging. I specifically asked if anything was missing and was reassured everything was present. When I got it home, I discovered there was quite a significant amount of damage but, more importantly, the keys were missing and it was locked shut!

This basically means I have a bulky chunk of metal that I can’t move sitting in my hall. I can’t even put the wheels on it because they are locked in one of the drawers. Halfords refused to pick it up as I didn’t have the full packaging. It did offer to discount the product by £75 and order a new key. But it is now February and I still don’t have a key. The store says it is head office’s problem because I bought it online. Head office says it is the store’s problem because I selected store pick up. It has now offered to give me all my money back but won’t help me dispose of the item. Without the key it is useless.

CL, London

Halfords says it prides itself on high levels of customer service but accepts that on this occasion it failed to meet those standards.

“We have apologised to the customer, have arranged a full refund and have offered to collect the product at a time convenient to them,” it told us.

The Consumer Rights Act gives you up to 30 days to reject an item. The fact that you bought it online gave you extra protections, although your problem was that Halfords wouldn’t engage with the problem, rather than asserting your rights.

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