Our Greenhouse - a tale of customer service in France

France is not generally renowned for it’s after sales service or ‘customer is always right’ attitude. If there is a problem the response is often a Gallic shrug of the shoulders! Well, Stop Press! I have a tale of happiness and success.

The Greenhouse - it may only be plastic, but it is my pride and joy - purchased on 23/1/11 for the bargain price of 69€, successfully assembled in an hour about a week ago, and already the snug and happy home of our first seedlings. Until Sunday morning…

Hubby had carefully invented a string based pulley system so the zippy door could be rolled up and secured either fully open or partially open - clever eh? Before heading to the UK he had demonstrated the door system and entrusted me with the responsibility of opening in the morning, monitoring the amount of openness during the day and closing at night - simples. Well, within an hour of his departure as I was opening up a small gust of wind caught the flapping door and blew the zipper off the top of the zip - I couldn’t believe it either! Turns out there is no stopping point to the top of the zips. A friend, Sue, popped over and with the help of a couple of pairs of pliers we fiddled rather a lot and finally got it back onto the zip but couldn’t get it to close, then it snapped - bugger!

I don’t do conflict, I get tongue-tied trying to fight my corner in English so was not looking forward to returning the plastic cover to Castorama, explaining how the zip had broken and asking for a replacement in French! Having dithered at home this morning; been on the internet, had a coffee, cleaned the toilets etc I decided I couldn’t put it off any longer and set off for Niort (a 40 min drive). After a few deep breaths in the carpark I headed to the reception desk. I calmly explained to the severe looking lady (French reception desks always have a severe looking lady) that there was a problem with the zip. She looked at my receipt, phoned a number of different extension numbers before demanding to know why I hadn’t returned the entire product - the fact that the frame is not faulty and fully assembled in my garden - Duh! I was told to wait for her colleague from the garden dept. He arrived, I explained again there was a problem with the zip, he too looked at my receipt, asked if it was the big greenhouse then disappeared, before returning with a replacement cover - no awkward questions, just great customer service; thank you Monsieur Jardin.

Now I’m off to sew the tops of the zips on the replacement cover!

For more of my ramblings please visit http://www.frenchvillagediaries.com

Excellent! Bet you now spend many hours pottering… :slight_smile:

We too would like something bigger - especially as we had a lovely extra big real glass one in UK :frowning: but for now this is better than nothing and will free up some space on the spare bedroom floor which is where we usually store all germinating seeds!

Thanks! I’m not sure that would keep her happy though, she’s probably going to want something that you could drive into!


The code becomes a picture - magic!

James I did try to add one, but just got a whole load of code! Let me try again!

Have you got a picture of the greenhouse? It won’t be long before Catharine starts thinking she’s Percy Thrower and planting stuff in pots all over the place in a manic burst of enthusiasm only to let it all die or get choked by weeds by the end of week one. If I can contain all of this in a handy little greenhouse I would be most pleased :wink:

Wow! Well done!