“ Type: Garden Bench „
We have one of these garden benches in our back garden. We wanted something that was not too expensive but that would look nice and fit in with the rest of our garden. We saw one of these benches on display in Wilkinson's and thought it had a rustic look to it and would look nice in our garden so bought one. We paid something like £20 for this bench a few years ago so it was a fabulous price. We had to ask a member of staff if they had one in stock as all we could see in the shop was the one that was already put together. They said they had them and they came to the till with us to get the till op to ring one up and then told us to bring our car round to their delivery entrance to pick it up as it was very heavy. I am glad we had the car with us as it really was heavy but we managed to get the box in the car and set off home. When we got it all out in the garden we opened the box and found all the bits that were needed to fix the chair together. There were the lengths of wood for the back and seat and then there were the metal bits for the legs and arms and various fixings. The chair was quite simple to assemble, it came with a diagram showing you what to do and where things would go and it was easy to follow it. I reckon it took less than half an hour to have it all put together and it took two of us although I reckon one could have done it on their own. The chair feel ok when you sit on it, it does feel a little bit wobbly up to what our other bench felt like which was an all wooden affair and a lot sturdier but we have been very careful with it over the years and made sure the grandchildren do not jump about on it or swing it side to side when sitting on it. We have had the bench now for about three years, we have restained the wooden bits a few times and also painted the metal bits with a gloss paint. The bench looks as good now as when we got it and we are very happy with our £20 spent.
We were looking for a small, preferably wooden garden bench of a size that would fit under a decorative metal trellis / rose arch we'd just installed in the garden. It was a surprise to me that most garden benches available in the shops - wooden and otherwise - seem to be of a standard minimum size of about 126cm wide, which made them too large to for our proposed 'arbour' arrangement. The great benefit of this Wilkinson's bench from our point of view is its size - at 112cm wide it's just small enough to fit into the space we have available for it. It was the only bench we found of this size on the market this year (having tried the usual DIY shops, Ebay, Homebase and Argos) and it has sold out from Wilkinson's to my knowledge twice - it was out of stock when I first located the product on their webpage, but I registered my in it interest there and in less than a week I was emailed to say that new stock was available. It is currently sold out again - so this seems to be a pretty popular item - but they may restock in future. Ordering this online, I had this delivered to our local store and picked it up to save the approx. £5 delivery costs. This delayed our getting the bench by about a week or slightly longer; we were notified when it was sent from the depot, but it took another 3-4 days to turn up at the shop for us to collect so I think their time predictions for how long it's going to take for a shop collection are a bit of an underestimate. There was good communication throughout and the local shop rang us to say when our bench had arrived, and as we weren't in any particular hurry to get it, I have no complaints about the ordering process, which was a lot better than the service I've received buying online from other high-street shops. Having said that, even flat-packed, this small bench was still such a large and bulky item that I wished I'd spent the extra fiver and got it delivered to my house -since the bench barely fitted in our car. As I bought this online I had only seen a picture of it before it arrived. After assembly it looked surprisingly small at first, almost like a child's seat - but having bought it for its size, I can hardly complain about that - and though the seat is lower to the ground than I expected it is all right to sit on. (Which means that this bench might not be a good choice for older people - a couple of my older relatives have trouble getting up from very low seats and this is a particularly close-to-the-ground one.) It's a little fiddly - with lots of nuts, washers and bolts - to assemble but not too difficult though the instructions, being the typical written-by-someone-whose-first-language-is-not-English printouts you'd expect to find accompanying such a budget-range, made-in-China item, are not as clear as they could be. The quality of the wood and metal work is acceptable, not brilliant, but since you're paying only £20 for this bench, it's quite all right for the money. I'm not sure the finish on the wood (honey coloured varnish) is going to stand up well in the rain, or over winter and I think if we want to keep this in useable condition, we'll have to get a cover for it - at least in winter. And goodness knows where the Chinese hardwood used in its construction comes from; personally I'd rather not think about it as I suspect it's not from any kind of FSC-certifiable or otherwise sustainable source. I knew what I was buying when I purchased it however, so this is no reflection on the item itself. The instructions for assembling the bench are marked 'this item is for occasional use only' and it does indded seem to be of rather flimsy constuction. We had a bit of trepidation, first sitting on it - but it's been robust enough in the week we've had it so far. Where we've put it it's somewhat obscured by the trellis and overhanging greenery and it looks great in that that setting - if it was out on its own in full view it might not appear to such impressive advantage as this is on close inspection a noticeably budget item. Excellent for our purpose, however.
Verdigris finish cast iron framed bench with Chinese hardwood slats.