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Wholesalers pledge to maintain supplies

UK: The UK’s leading refrigeration and air conditioning wholesalers have pledged to maintain equipment and commodity supplies during the coronavirus crisis. 

Never before has the cooling industry played such a key role in keeping the country functioning, whether that be to ensure the integrity of the cold chain, provide protection for vital medication or maintain and secure our key data centres and telecommunications sites. The availability of the necessary equipment, component and commodity supplies is essential to support the engineers maintaining these services.  

Beijer Ref, which operates the Dean & Wood, HRP, RW and DWG branches across the UK and Ireland, has pledged to keep the business trading and its branches fully open.

John Billson, Beijer Ref UK and Ireland MD, said: “We have 47 branches. As long as we have 47 staff fit and able to work, those branches will remain open.”

To achieve this continuity, Billson explained that staff would be transferred between branches as necessary to keep the branches open. “And that includes members of the management team,” he said. 

The wholesaler is also not short of product. “We invested heavily in stock this year in anticipation of Brexit and our supply chain is robust,” he maintained.

Operating as normal

Wolseley says it is working tirelessly to keep its branches operating as normal wherever possible. “In the event of a branch closing we will do everything we can to provide alternative arrangements,” the company said.

“We are in regular contact with our supply partners and are able to confirm that we have significant stock to cope with any potential impact on supply chain. We will maintain regular dialogue with all our suppliers to ensure any disruption is kept to a minimum.”

Open for now

FSW, and its ESP, Just One Call and NRW FM businesses, said that all of its branches remain open, for now, but has implemented a new regime at its trade counters. All collection orders from trade counters must now be pre-ordered either by phone or by email. In addition, goods must be collected from the main warehouse doors and not from the trade counter. Goods must also be signed for using the customers own pen to avoid as much contact as possible.

Branch opening hours will be strictly 08.00 to 17.00, FSW MD Graham Hill told customers in the company’s most recent update.

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