Bridewell UK & Cardgains Coronavirus Update

Wednesday 27th May 2020

We were hoping for a June 1st re-opening for our stores, however the date is now set for June 15th.
 
This delay allows all stores to reach the recommended in store procedures to ensure staff and customer safety.
 
I am sure members will already have plans in place for traffic flow and distancing measures in store etc however the attached links (Staying Covid-19 Secure Poster, Working Safely During Covid 19 - Safety Guide) may be useful to make sure everything required is in place.
 
Although ‘last to reopen’ we have learned from other open retail sectors how to ‘set up’ stores which has educated the customers who are now very used to queueing, staying 2 meters apart and sanitising where ever needed.
 
Signage, sneeze guard and sanitizer products are all available from Cardgains suppliers.

 

Thursday 7th May 2020

As all members are hopefully aware we are still contactable whilst in this ‘lockdown’ period as we continue to work from home supporting members and suppliers where we can. Our communication system to members is via this website and via direct email to members.

If you are not receiving the member emails and wish to be added to the list please go to the tab above ‘email Reg’ and simply enter your Cardgains/Bridewell UK member number and email address.

The following is from this week’s update –

Regards Chris csd@bridewelluk.co.uk Steve steveg@bridewelluk.co.uk Debbie  deb@bridewelluk.co.uk

As always we hope everyone is staying safe and keeping well as we approach week 5 of lockdown for the majority of our membership.

Over To Boris

We wait in anticipation for a positive Government announcement over the next few days where there is a strong expectation of a controlled, slow, safe exit from lockdown, for small ‘non-essential’ stores allowing members to plan for reopening.
 
Whatever the directive is we will all need to follow the recommendations and make any necessary changes required to start retailing again.
 
Above all any openings must ensure a safe retailing environment for all staff and all customers!
 

May Statement Details

In the meantime today’s update gives further information regarding Easter returns policies from suppliers and details of the options available to receive and pay your Cardgains statement following the months payment break.
 
Hopefully members have taken advantage of the Government grants and furlough schemes and have received the payments which, along with the months payment break, has been a major help.
 
This negotiated break with our suppliers has been a very welcome gesture to allow some breathing space for members whilst applying for the various Government grants and rebates, especially as the suppliers could only take advantage of furloughing staff and don’t have access to ‘grants’, the suppliers money assist schemes have been predominantly ‘loans’!
 
By working together over the last couple of months both members and our suppliers should benefit once out of lockdown. We will need each other more than ever. ‘Retailers need suppliers and suppliers need retailers’,  hence the need for all of us to play our part now in order to pay suppliers.
 
Now the Cardgains payment break is over we will be producing a statement for all members on Monday 11th May.
 
This will be posted to all members on Monday evening 1st class post to the usual postal address. It will also be sent as well via email to the members who are set up having requested an email copy previously.
 
If you wish to receive an email statement, as well as a paper copy, please email your name and member number to deb@bridewelluk.co.uk and we will send one out.

If you have any queries on your statement please email deb@bridewelluk.co.uk before the payment or direct debit due date.
 
There will be no Cardgains newsletter this month.
 

Latest Easter Updates

With regarding Easter returns policies, we now have further updates from the following suppliers ;
 
Second Nature – Members to hold stock and pay 2021
 
Noel Tatt – Members to hold stock and pay 2021
 
Nigel Quiney/Paper Rose – Customers can retain the Easter 2020 product and pay for the stock after Easter 2021 or if stock is minimal customers can request a credit.
 
Woodmansterne -  Should members have any queries regarding Easter products that have not been covered  already then please get in touch directly.
 
I C &G (Easter policy update) – Invoices will be frozen for stores closed due to Covid-19 and payment due after Easter 2021. Retailers to store product.
 
That’s it for this week’s updates.
 
As always stay safe as we await any lockdown easing as the nation starts on the slow road to recovery.

Regards

Chris, Steve and Deb.



Friday 24th April 2020

Easter 2020 Returns:


As all members are hopefully aware we are still contactable whilst in this ‘lockdown’ period as we continue to work from home supporting members and suppliers where we can. Our communication system to members is via this website and via direct email to members.

If you are not receiving the member emails and wish to be added to the list please go to the tab above ‘email Reg’ and simply enter your Cardgains/Bridewell UK member number and email address.

The following is from this week’s update –

Regards Chris csd@bridewelluk.co.uk Steve steveg@bridewelluk.co.uk Debbie  deb@bridewelluk.co.uk

As always we hope everyone is staying safe and keeping well as we approach week 5 of lockdown for the majority of our membership.

EASTER 2020 RETURNS:


We have had numerous member enquiries throughout the week asking about the Easter returns policies from the Cardgains suppliers.
 
Very little Easter product had been sold when the lockdown occurred, in fact some members reported back to having Easter cards still boxed in the store.
 
Different policies have been put in place by different suppliers, we are collating supplier schemes to share with yourselves for your information.
 
At the moment we have the following information:
 
IC & G  - When stores re-open IC&G will arrange for the sales team to uplift and credit as soon as possible.
 
Carte Blanche Greetings - Members will receive full credits for Easter products and asked to retain the stock until next year. A new invoice will follow with a payment due date of April 2021.
 
Words’n’Wishes - 2020 Easter cards will be 'free of  charge ' to members. Stock at trade value will be given in exchange against a future everyday order (once the restrictions are lifted) at store level by your sales agent.
Members are requested to pay the Spring season in full and obviously the Easter stock can be kept to sell Easter 2021.
 
UKG – Will be communicating with members directly  with details of their Covid–19 Easter returns policy.
 
Abacus - Territory sales managers will swap Easter returns over for everyday car stock, which is done with all seasonal products. When stores reopen members are to contact their TSM to make an appointment, TSM's will endeavour to see everyone as quickly as possible. There will also be some mother’s day to swap out but valentines has been swapped already.

Cherry Orchard – Extended credit until the end of December.
 
Additional updates will follow when further supplier information is received.

Grant Applications

The latest ‘zoom’ meeting at the GCA took place earlier and concerns were raised that many retailers were not taking advantage of all the government schemes available to assist retailers through these difficult times.

It seems many have implemented the furlough scheme but some have still not had the grants through that are available for small ‘non-essential’ retail businesses.
 
It does vary from council to council up and down the country. Some have been quicker than others in contacting retailers. The key thing is that if you haven’t had anything yet then to make contact immediately. This is vital as grants for £10k and £25k are available depending on your rateable value.
 
Remember these are grants not loans.
 
Details of some national and regional links can be found on the Cardgains website.
 
You will need your business rates account number, name, address and bank details.
 
The grants are per shop for businesses with rateable values up to £51k

 
Covid -19 SHOP SIGNAGE

 
Whilst ‘Cardgains supplier website watching’ we found the following useful link on the Widdop site to enable retailers to download and print A4 Covid-19 advice and safety notices to put up in store when we start to reopen in the coming months. Please feel free to download and use.
 

 
 
As always please stay safe
 
Regards
 
Chris , Steve and Debbie.


Friday 17th April 2020

Please see below latest advice and instructions regarding  claiming on the Government Job Retention Scheme from HMRC:




As you prepare to make a claim through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. The below will hopefully assist on how and when to access the system with some more information about what you will need to have ready before the system goes live.
The info is also updating you on an important change to the scheme relating to employee eligibility:

  • you can claim for employees that were employed as of 19 March 2020 and were on your PAYE payroll on or before that date; this means that you will have made an RTI submission notifying us of payment of that employee on or before 19 March 2020
  • employees that were employed as of 28 February 2020 and on payroll (i.e. notified to us on an RTI submission on or before 28 February) and were made redundant or stopped working for you after that, and prior to 19 March 2020, can also qualify for the scheme if you re-employ them and put them on furlough.

More information on this can be found on GOV.UK.
How to claim
As you prepare to make a claim, please note:

  • the online claim service will be launched on GOV.UK on 20‌‌ April 2020 – please do not try to access it before this date as it won’t be available
  • the only way to make a claim is online – the service should be simple to use and any support you need available on GOV.UK; this will include help with calculating the amount you can claim
  • you can make the claim yourself even if you usually use an agent
  • claims will be paid within 6 working days; you should not contact us unless it is absolutely necessary – any queries should be directed to your agent, representative or our webchat service
  • we cannot answer any queries from employees – they will need to raise these with you, as their employer, directly.

Information you will need before you make a claim
In addition to the information in our previous email, you will need to have the following before 20‌‌ April 2020:

  • a Government Gateway (GG) ID and password – if you don’t already have a GG account, you can apply for one online, or by going to GOV.UK and searching for 'HMRC services: sign in or register'
  • be enrolled for PAYE online – if you aren’t registered yet, you can do so now, or by going to GOV.UK and searching for 'PAYE Online for employers'
  • the following information for each furloughed employee you will be claiming for:
  1. Name.
  2. National Insurance number.
  3. Claim period and claim amount.
  4. PAYE/employee number (optional).
  • if you have fewer than 100 furloughed staff – you will need to input information directly into the system for each employee
  • if you have 100 or more furloughed staff – you will need to upload a file with information for each employee; we will accept the following file types: .xls .xlsx .csv .ods.

If you want an agent to act for you
Please note:

  • agents authorised to act for you on PAYE matters can make the claim on your behalf using their ID and password
  • you will need to tell your agent which UK bank account you want the grant to be paid into, in order to ensure funds are paid as quickly as possible to you.

You should retain all records and calculations in respect of your claims.
Guidance on GOV.UK is being regularly updated so please review it frequently.
 We continue to wish you all the best at this challenging time.
Yours sincerely
jharra
Jim Harra
First Permanent Secretary and Chief Executive – HMRC

 


Friday 10th April 2020

Over this  Easter period we hope all our members and suppliers continue to stay safe and keep well.

Like so many members and suppliers the Cardgains team is working hard behind the scenes, reduced in numbers, and all 3 of us are working from home.

We are still contactable via email should anyone have any particular enquires.

The same email addresses can be used to forward any further ‘useful links’ or ’suggestions’ that you may have which other members would benefit from. If you send them in we will post them on our website.

In the coming weeks we intend to put specific links with any updates from suppliers.

Chris  csd@bridewelluk.co.uk 

Steve steveg@bridewelluk.co.uk

Deb    deb@bridewelluk.co.uk 

 

As you are aware we are having a member ‘statement’ holiday in April. However members  have also had the option to request a statement and pay as normal later this month.

To the members who asked for an email statement these were sent out earlier today.

Bank details for payment in are Barclays Bank

A/C No 53180484  

Sort Code - 20 - 76 - 97    

Ref - Your member number.

(Sorry we have no facility at the moment for Direct Debit or card payment)

It’s not too late to request a statement. To receive a statement please request one from deb@bridewelluk.co.uk please include the email address you wish the statement sending to.

We will continue to keep members up to date via email and this website.

Stay safe and well.

 

SG & CD & DB


Friday 3rd April 2020

Dear Member,

Firstly, we hope everyone is keeping well and staying safe in this very difficult period.

Our ‘working from home’ team has, this week, continued working with our suppliers regarding the one-month statement break designed to assist members over the next few weeks; with the next statement being scheduled for the 10th of May for payment on the 18th May. (This could be a statement sent on email).

Members wishing to make a payment

We do have options for members who have already contacted us, who:

  1. Wish to pay some monies for old invoices.
  2. Would like to pay, if possible, in April as usual
  3. Are members who are classed as ‘essential’ stores who continue to trade and support local communities.

For all paying in purposes our bank details are as follows:

Barclays Bank

Sort code:                20 76 97

A/C No:                     53180484

Paying in ref:          Your Bridewell UK or Cardgains member number

If you would actually like a statement for March invoices by email, please request one from deb@bridewelluk.co.uk and we will arrange for one to be sent to you. Any requested statements would obviously only include invoices from companies who have continued working and have managed to get a statement to us, so may not be a final amount due.

The team have also worked tremendously hard this week with the task of trying to contact all our 1000 plus members of our buying groups, trying to ensure everyone is aware of our COVID-19 action plan.

Telephone calls were made to every single member who previously was not registered with us via email.

From these telephone contacts, members who answered were updated and asked to ‘Cardgains website watch’ for future information and register their email address.

Where shops were closed, messages were left on answerphones where possible.

We do unfortunately have 72 members who we couldn’t get a message to.  We will of course continue to try to get everyone on the email register. If you are reading this update and you are not receiving emails, please register on the ‘COVID-19 email reg.’ tab above.

Contact changes from Monday 6th APRIL

Like many of our suppliers, where possible we will continue reducing the number of staff in our business, using the Government’s furlough scheme.

From Monday, our team contactable via email are:

Accounts:                Steve    steveg@bridewelluk.co.uk

                                Debbie   deb@bridewelluk.co.uk

Sales & Marketing:   Chris      csd@bridewelluk.co.uk

 

Please continue to stay safe and keep an eye on this website.

To the members still open and helping the local community, thank you and well done.

Chris & Steve

Joint Managing Directors

Bridewell UK & Cardgains


Monday 30th March

Dear Member,

As promised, we are trying to keep everyone up to date where possible via direct email and on this site, as we continue through this very difficult period.

If you are not on our email list and would like to be included in all member updates, please click either the ‘Cardgains Email Sub.’ or ‘Bridewell UK Email Sub.’ tab above and fill in the required email registration fields.

We will share any supplier and accounting updates as well as any useful business links we are aware of.

A link we received today was from a member, Cards & Gifts in Sheffield.  Although this is regional, we believe a local search for your area should/could find a similar scheme.

https://www.sheffield.gov.uk/utilities/form/business/apply-for-business-support-grantIt

If anyone has found any other links or contact points that may be useful to fellow members, please send them so we can share with others.

Keeping in touch and assisting all members, and each other, is of the upmost importance as by working together we will all be wiser and stronger coming through this current crisis.

Some very kind words of appreciation, have been received from many members, supporting our actions and communication systems; thank you from all our team working at home.

Please scroll down to see the contact details for the staff who are working from home.

Take care everyone, we are here to help if we can.

In the meantime, stay safe and stay in if possible.

Steve Grocott and Chris Dyson

Joint Managing Directors & the Cardgains & Bridewell UK Team


Friday 27th March
 

Dear Member,

Following our previous communication advising of the negotiations we were having with suppliers regarding a 1-month statement delay I am pleased to say this has met with the approval of the majority of our suppliers. Where suppliers have been unable to agree to our request, we will pay those suppliers anyway on your behalf and collect via your statement at a later date.

This is obviously good news and shows the importance of us all working together.

Of course, the length of lockdown is unknown, and we are working towards being able to re-open shops in April and sending May statements out on 10th May.  However, this could change depending on Government advice, in which case we will advise you accordingly.

Please be assured no member ‘direct debits’ will be taken in April; no management charge will be applied, and no late payment surcharge will be levied.

Could we ask however that any monies due from outstanding old queries that have now been resolved be paid direct where possible into our bank:

Barclays Bank

Sort code:              20 76 97

A/C number:           53180484

Ref:                        Your Cardgains member number

We will continue to communicate as and when we have any developments and, like everyone, following all government guidelines.

We will also be updating this page daily with any changes.

The link below gives the latest update on how to claim under the Government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme which you may find useful

https://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/UKHMRCED/bulletins/28366d5

As previously mentioned, you can use the links below to contact the staff who are working from home.

If your enquiry is relating to an accounts query, please contact our Accounts Manager, Debbie Levick deb@bridewelluk.co.uk

Alternatively, you can contact Steve Grocott, our Joint Managing Director steveg@bridewelluk.co.uk

For Sales & Marketing contact Chris Dyson, our Joint Managing Director  csd@bridewelluk.co.uk

 

Take care everyone, we are here to help if we can.

In the meantime, stay safe.

Steve Grocott and Chris Dyson

Joint Managing Directors

Cardgains & Bridewell UK

 

Welcome to Cardgains…

Cardgains is the largest buying group in the UK catering specifically for independent retailers within the greeting card, gift and associated products marketplace.

Cardgains has been trading since 1989, so is celebrating its 30th Anniversary in 2019. Over the years, Cardgains has helped 1000’s of independent retailers and membership remains constant.

Factors contributing to the success are the excellent support, relationship building and commitment from existing suppliers and members, as well as improved procedures and efficiency of account handling at Head Office.

More than ever, in difficult retailing conditions, Cardgains strives to assist members by focusing on areas where they can make a point of difference, including greeting cards, gifts and customer service. Cardgains also aims to encourage new members by showing them benefits of the preferential trading terms from within the portfolio and how to use them to optimum potential.