Muted ‘Black Friday’ for Moray’s frustrated bargain hunters

Elgin shoppers line up for ‘Black Friday’ bargains (David Robertson)

Moray did not entirely escape the crazy antics of bargain-hunting shopping on the UK retail industry-styled ‘Black Friday’.

Stores throughout the country witnessed frantic attempts by shoppers to claim pre-Christmas bargains when they opened their doors at midnight, with police being called to many as disorderly shoppers fought with each other and store staff.

UK shops adopted the ‘Black Friday’ term from the United States, where for several years stores have offered bargain prices immediately after Thanksgiving. However, in the UK the term is being described as nothing more than an attempt by retailers to hype up sales ahead of Christmas.

While the security manager at the St Giles centre in Elgin said that everyone had been on their best behaviour, there were some frantic scenes at Tesco witnessed by David Robertson, who said that for most it was a wasted trip when the doors opened just after midnight.

He said: “Unless you wanted a 32-inch TV for £100 or a half price coffee machine for most it was a waste of time – and to even get a chance at these items you would have needed to have been stood in line for at least an hour before Tesco let you inside at midnight.

“At midnight Tesco started letting people in but in staggered groups to avoid the rush.

“The Tesco staff had switched off the escalators and told people not to take trolleys upstairs were the frenzied madness for bargains lay – but this did not stop customers dragging trolleys up the static escalators in a bid to fill them.

“The reality was there were no bargains on games consoles, video games or DVD’s – and very little at half price.”

Two stores that refused to take part in ‘Black Friday’ was the Aldi and Lidl discount chains who have provided the first serious challenge to traditional UK stores in a generation.

Both said that they offer customers bargain prices all year round and saw no need to offer Black Friday promotions.

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