Warning about Sweatshop in Sheffield Meadowhall!

DO NOT go there. Having previously sung their praises I now take it all back – today they have been unhelpful in the extreme. My New Balance shoes (W860v5 D), bought in February and now with 150k on the clock, are splitting around the toe on the outside. I took them back to the shop, thinking that as they’d been so helpful before, they would be so again. No. The only response? “You’ve had them more than a month so there’s nothing we can do.” I pointed out that either the shoes were faulty or there was a problem with the manufacture, but either way, a trainer should not split after 3 months and 150k. “It’s never happened before.” I pointed out that it had happened. “It might be that your feet are too broad for the shoe.” I told him that it was fitted at this store, so that was their problem then. “No, if you were happy with the fit it’s not our problem.” I asked to speak to the manager. “He’s not here.” Can I have his name, please? “We can’t give out names.” In the end I managed to get a first name, and got the salesperson to ring New Balance, who said there was nothing they could do either. What, without even seeing it? I don’t believe the salesperson even bothered ringing.

So I am extremely displeased. I’ll complain to New Balance, obviously, because my previous Brooks shoes didn’t split, even after 500+ miles, and I’ve never heard of it happening to anyone else either. But I am very unhappy, because that’s my £100 gone, if neither Sweatshop nor New Balance will refund or replace. What rubbish customer service and what a bad product.


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21 Replies

  • Faulty goods, there's a years guarantee, that's statutory!

  • That's not quite the case... "Fit for purpose" is more what you would be arguing.

    A running shoe would only be expected to last around 500 miles, so if you run 500 miles in 8 months you can’t expect them to last 12 months.

    However in this case the pair of shoes have been found to be “Not fit for purpose” as they have only clocked up 150k.

    New Balance have no contract with Anniemurph, it is Sweatshops problem to sort and I would recommend Anniemurph to write to the manager due to them not being there when you initially went to see them about the problem.

  • That's very helpful, completerunner, thank you, especially the bit about who has the contract. I hadn't thought that through so thanks for making it clearer :)

  • Faulty goods fit for purpose, it's the same thing in a way! That's knitpicking!

    It's not about mileage, its about faulty goods, just get them back and read them the riot act. I've done it many times and won.

  • I'm certainly trying. There has been no response today despite several attempts so more tomorrow. I shall not rest... :D

  • I'll certainly be getting back to them about expecting trainers to last longer than 150k!

  • This is awful. Why not bypass the assistant you spoke to and try phoning to speak to the manager. That's quite extraordinary treatment. If you don't get any joy from him/her, then explain that you will be contacting Sweatshop head office in......... (Google the address so you sound more convincing) Alternatively, you could always threaten them with Watchdog. Good luck!

  • I think I will start by trying to phone the manager today, AM, and use all the helpful advice I have received here and on the FB pages. Aren't running forums (fora? :D ) so supportive and full of lovely people?

  • Yes , keep at 'em Annie . Your "contract " is with Sweatshop and it is up to them to resolve it .

    Good Luck ! xxx

  • Thanks, Pops - perhaps I was just dealing with an oik who didn't know and couldn't be bothered, and the manager will sort it all out. I'll find out today! Ta for the good wishes! xxx

  • Yeah - I hadn't realised :(

  • If they are over £100 and you paid by credit card - contact them. Your contact is also with them. They may reimburse you and claim back from sweatshop.

    On the face of it, not fit for purpose is the right thing to claim. And since they did the fitting they can't really claim the fit is incorrect.

  • I'm not quite sure where I stand with the credit card charge, because the payments went up in increments. I originally had Asics, which hurt my hip, so took them back and had Brooks instead, which didn't fit properly, so took them back and ended up with the New Balance. Each time, because of their no-refund policy, I had to pay a bit more, so although the total cost was £100, the last charge on my credit card was only £30.

    But yes, you and several others are saying not fit for purpose so that's the way to go. I'll get back to Sweatshop today. Thanks for the advice!

  • Not sure whether other links provided cover this but I think you will find that as long as the goods themselves cost £100+ it doesn't matter if only part of the purchase price was paid with a credit card. (This is protection consumers have from Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974.)

  • Thanks, Knotty, I didn't know that, so I will look into that more as well. What a helpful place this is :)

  • Go to citizensadvice.org.uk and type 'faulty goods' in the search box. That will tell you exactly what your rights are under the Sale of Goods Act 1979 and tell you how to deal with the retailer, including template letters etc

    You are protected by law.

  • Thanks, Ully, I hadn't realised there were template letters on there as well. Brilliant!

  • ok, so you've had an issue with the shoes and you've taken them back. They should resolve this at first contact. They did not so my advice is to contact the Chief Executive of Sweatshop and their office will ensure that the complaint is dealt correctly and to your satisfaction as they will contact the store directly themselves. No need to look for the email of Hugh Brasher cos here is the link to it : ceoemail.com/s.php?id=76371...

  • That's great, blunta - thank you very much! Saves me scrabbling round the website looking for the info :) I'll write out all the info in a calm and considered, logical manner today :D and send it off to be resolved.

  • I hope you get it resolved!! It is a lot of money and they should be providing better customer service. It's also frustrating to hear that the shop didn't deal with properly and now you have to do this. What I would say is take a photo of the shoe for you and them!!

  • Thanks, Vix - I have photos (but can't attach them here, of course) and it was interesting to see on the C25K Facebook page that someone else had a very similar issue with a New Balance shoe - splitting in a very similar place! Yes, I will push it with the shop - no response today, which is even more frustrating, but I will get there!

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