Positive Moray response to excessive local delivery charges

POTENTIAL CUSTOMERS FOR a second North East craft brewers are having to pay a £7 additional charge for delivery to Moray.

Last week insideMoray highlighted how Aberdeenshire-based Brewdog – who have a business that has been valued at a reported £1billion – were charging customers a premium of £4 to deliver to customers in neighbouring Moray.

The Brewery told customer Joanne Piggott that the reason they had to levy the charge was that all deliveries were processed in England – and contracted courier ParcelForce charged an additional fee for postcodes in the Highlands and Islands, including Moray.

Now a second brewery customer in Moray has revealed that those living in the region who are ordering from the online store of Lossiemouth-based Windswept Brewery have to pay an even greater premium of £7 – for deliveries at their own doorstep.

“I was actually checking on deliveries to a friend in Northern Ireland,” the Moray-based customer said, adding: “However, I was shocked to note not only that the charge would be a hefty £18.99 – but that even if I wished a delivery in Moray, it would cost £12.99 – that is £7 more than if I placed an order to just about anywhere else in the UK!

“That is frankly silly – effectively it means that customers in Elgin or Forres would have to pay that premium for a Windswept delivery right here in Moray.”

The Windswept online store advises that the company uses a partner, Eebria.com, to handle their order process, saying that the system is “Another way to enjoy Windswept without leaving the house!”

However, under the section dealing with delivery costs the site explains that while beer is  “collected from the brewery and sent straight to your home” and adds that this attracts a charge of £5.99, it adds: ”If you live outside of Parcelforce Zone 1, we sadly have to charge a higher delivery fee.

“Zone 2 of the UK (Highlands and Islands of Scotland) is charged at £12.99 – Postcodes: IV, HS, KA27-28, KW, PA20-49, PA60-78, PH17-26, PH30-44, ZE. Zone 3 of the UK (Northern Ireland, Isle of Man and Scilly) is charged at £18.99 – Postcodes BT, IM, TR21-25.”

Windswept Response

Nigel Tiddy – local service contract to resolve issue.

However, having been contacted by insideMoray, Windswept Brewing Co managing director Nigel Tiddy said that they were aware of the issue and would be taking steps to resolve it for Moray-based customers initially – and eventually all Highlands and Islands customers.

He said: “It is unfortunate that ParcelForce do charge a surcharge for zone 2 deliveries which include most of the Moray Postcodes – this charge appears to be irrespective of the collection address.

“As we use Parcel Force for our nationwide Online deliveries, online sales to Highlands and Islands (Zone 2) will incur the surcharge. As a very small company we do not have the buying power to influence this and currently cannot change our online courier as we use a third party to help facilitate our online sales set up.

“This is an issue we come across in many of our day to day dealings with deliveries to the brewery so we know it is frustrating.

“Over the last few months we have been looking at how we can resolve this issue for our local customers. While most of our local supporters come down to the brewery to see us and buy their beer here, we understand that this may not be possible for all.

“We have just established a contract with a local service that will allow us to equal the Zone 1 rates of delivery for our local customers – but only for orders placed over the phone. This will be available in Moray as a pilot scheme initially and we will look to roll it out to the whole of the Highlands and Islands once we have ironed out the wrinkles!

“We are currently updating our website to reflect this and the new terms will be available soon.”