Why did John Lewis delay my £6,500 curtain order?

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We ordered curtains and tracks from John Lewis (£6,550 including fitting) in April last year after moving into a new house, but the saga dragged into the autumn. We ordered at the Oxford Street store – picked fabrics, booked an estimator to measure up – and then completed the purchase in store. We were told the whole process would take “between six to eight weeks”.

We chose the 0% finance option. Alarm bells should have started ringing when we were never contacted to take the deposit. I had to go in and volunteer to pay.

The order was then apparently never transmitted to its home services division in Didsbury. Mistake after mistake followed over close to eight months, adding to the already mounting stress of dealing with moving.

My attempts to negotiate a “goodwill” payment (though there is no amount that would be sufficient to restore any goodwill towards John Lewis) led to an offer of £1,625 in cash and £150 in vouchers – it was adamant it would not go any higher. I have been putting together a submission to the small claims court but am exhausted by the whole thing.

ME, London

It seems you were the victim of delays and a customer service meltdown after the company decided to centralise the administration behind its home furnishings division. In the end, you did get all the curtains although there were still problems with one of the tracks. But, disappointingly, John Lewis would still not budge on the original “goodwill” payment. We think this was ungenerous given this lengthy saga.

John Lewis says: “We’re extremely sorry for ME’s experience and have made a goodwill payment. The service he received falls far from the service standards we set ourselves.” It has lost another valued customer – and probably many more.

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  Posted Aug. 6, 2019, 6 a.m.