Social media rumours about it began a day or so earlier, but yesterday the Australian-owned company made it official — the last trading day for the Bunnings store in Waikanae will be Friday 27th.
It’s obvious that Bunnings decided to announce it now with an ultra-short notice period in the expectation that social protest about it would be minimised.
Districtwide Councilor Rob McCann says:
“Thanks to the NZ media for ensuring that the Bunnings closure doesn’t go unnoticed. It’s incredibly cynical to announce a review a week ago and then inform the workers on the 23rd December the Waikanae store is closing.
“Cynical is too soft a word, perhaps heartless is more accurate when describing the timing. How can these workers get support and advice so close to Christmas? (or was that the point) and how can you treat loyal workers in this manner and effectively gag them from talking to the media or risk their redundancy? Massive fail, Bunnings.”
Big Australian companies are not noted for benevolence and this is just another example of numerous instances on both sides of the Tasman.
The pictures shown on TV One, which made the story the lead item on today’s 6 pm news bulletin, seem to bear out the statement that the store was doing a roaring trade, and with the many new houses being built in Waikanae now, that’s not hard to believe.
But the company says that the Waikanae outlet doesn’t suit its desire of having big box stores carrying a big product range.
We’re told that Goodman’s earthmovers have bought the land, so there’ll be no other retail outlet to replace it.
Thus there’ll be no building products available for sale in Waikanae after Friday: you’ll need to go to Mitre 10 Mega in Paraparaumu for them. But you’ll still be able to buy small items at John’s Hardware in Mahara Place.