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WITHOUT PREJUDICE Complex Manager, Bunnings Northland 120 Chifley Drive, Preston Vic 3072 5 Ph: 9416 6000

Fax: 9416 6099 Email: northland@bunnings.com.au


Ref: 131130-G. H .Schorel-Hlavka O.W.B. to Bunnings management - COMPLAINT

30-11-2013

Sir/Madam, On Friday 29 November 2013 I attended to Bunnings Preston and besides my various 10 purchases also requested to purchase 9 items of Sandleford letters which are on special. Desi I understand to be a manager, as I viewed not only verbally abused me but also demanded I provide my identification as she was going to report me to security. So, I view I am entitled to a personal apology from Desi (as shown on her name tag) and also of Bunnings management. . 15 I will below give some background details about myself, before returning to the issues subject to my complaint. I used to be a frequent customer of McEwan, Northland and other locations prior to it being taken over by Westfarmers, to become Bunnings. I am a person who has been and still is known to hunt for bargains, however, it should be made clear that whatever I purchase on a bargain hunt 20 I have never even resold a single item. As such, I do it for personal reasons and having 9 children and more than a dozen grandchildren I can assure you they like to get the freebies from me. Albeit generally I purchase items using Mastercard it never result to any interest because I pay the monies back, often within days, of purchases. It just enables me a credible record by the bank of the numerous purchases at times in 5 different Bunning stores in one day. 25 . Bunnings advertise to have the lowest prices, and in view of the conduct of Desi I view this is false and misleading and deceptive advertising, this as Sandleford letters/numbers while shown to be on clearance for $4.00 on all stores, you find that for example in Coburg (Bunnings) they are sold for $1.00 each. In fact after leaving Preston Bunnings, I purchased 1 letter and 1 number, 30 just to get evidence they still are doing so. Likewise I purchased them for $1.00 each at Thomastown, Broadmeadows, Watergardens,Eltham, Epping as well as in Preston. Desi appears to have a problem with that where they are sold in any other store for less then what is computerised then she is not obligated to provide them for the $1.00 price. Whereas I hold that lowest prices without any qualification, meant just that. As such, if any other store sells the 35 letters/numbers for $1.00 then Bunnings Preston should match the same to maintain its claim lowest prices paint on its building. While there are signs about 10% but they relate to exclusion of clearance, customer special orders and business purchases, and so the 10% is not and was not pursued by me. . 40 A few weeks ago, I attend to Bunnings Preston when Desi refused to honour the commitment of lower prices, and so I left without purchasing the about 31 letters/numbers. I then travelled to Thomastown where I purchased more than 309 of them for $1.00 each. The cash register
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showing each and every one separately listed. Justin (a manager with Preston Bunnings) had personally checked this only about a week ago from the cash register print out and numerous others I had with me. I showed them again when Desi refused to honour the lowest prices. Prior to that she had once agreed to honour the purchase (the first time) and the second time refused to do so and then on Friday 29 November 20913 again argued, but while she did allow me to purchase the 9 items for $1.00 she made clear this was an exception and would report me to security. . Now, hold on, what on earth has it got to do with security where I am not some thief stealing from the store. In fact, at times when staff at a cash register incorrectly count items I alert them to it that there are more items so they then add them also. After all, while I am a bargain hunter it is taking the fun out of it if a staff member doesnt charge for items, so again, I then alert them to it. As such, my conduct was always and has always been honourable. Not unbecomming managers at times ask if I am looking for bargains and then point out to me where they are, just in case I missed it. As they know I like bargains. Having the banking records means I can prove that I purchase items, even so at times they are for years in my garage. Still, in the overall I save huge amounts of moneys while at the same time Bunnings is getting rid of stock it desires to dispose of quickly. . Because Bunnings may have one item on special and years later other items that I need also, I am patiently waiting for prices to drop, if at all. I make it clear I have never sold anything I purchased from Bunnings as it is not worth to me to do so. . When Desi previously refused to let me purchase items for $1.00 each I held that she was mistaken but may have intended to do the right thing to the company and so left it by it. However, her outburst and her comments, etc, on Friday 29 November 2013 in display of other customers and store staff to me was totally uncalled for. . Recently, I purchased 3 rings (at Preston Bunnings) which were discounted from $49.95 to $3.35. they were for barrels in the garden, but I held it be useful for putting basins on them which my wife use for plating strawberries, etc. Looks great. Subsequently I purchased 2 at Epping for the same price and later was at Bunnings Watergardens which had one but without a box or barcode. However, as I had my receipt with the barcode number I was able to purchase that one also. Whereas otherwise it is left on a shelf no one knowing what barcode belongs to it. So, you may understand I purchase items , such as basins (also from various Bunnings stores) then for $5.00 each and while my wife first didnt like them now she has them in use. Ok she is not to happy about using toilet pans as flower pots but time might get her over that also. She turned only 81 this week, so she still has time to get used to the idea, that they are just flower pots. Once I purchased 25 security doors for $10 each and other then one the rest has all been used up. I just cut them down for use for other things, including doors on my trailer. Actually, when I was talking to a staff member at another Bunnings store about this he made known they had some they wanted to get rid of and if I was interested I could have them also for $5.00 each, so I purchased them. . My wife is complaining about birds getting into her vegie path and I am considering to use security doors which prevent birds to get to her plants but let her have easy access. . So, you may get the picture I use items for different things. .
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And I am currently working on exposing the usage of barcodes starting with 93 (Australia) on products manufactured and assembled in China, but using the Australian bar code number.

We have here shown is the letter N cast in reverse an sold as like the ordinary letter N by 5 Bunnings Warehouse (Preston and Thomastown) The W is correct and has the both the same barcode only one shows 120mm, and the other 150mm. (Albeit both were 120mm)

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While Sandleford may be an Australian owned company I view it is deceptive to use an Australian barcode number for a product that I view was produced and assembled in the package 15 in China. Amazingly enough Bunnings never picked up that the letter N was at times incorrectly produced and packed. It seems to me that Sandleford may simply have the items send out from china directly to Bunnings and it may never even be aware of the incorrect manufacturing of the letter N. Nevertheless whatever failure in quality control, if there is any in existence, it is my 20 view that it is most unlikely that the back to front (Mirror image) N would have been packed in the Commonwealth of Australia. I do not see any blame to the Chinese because after all as far as I understand it our alphabet is not ordinary used by them. What my concern is that a company like Sandleford might be misusing the Australian barcode number as to pretend it is Australian made where in fact it seems not to be so. How many other 25 companies may perpetrate this kind of what I view abuse and misuse of the Australian bar code system? For the record I took pictures on 29 November 2013 showing Thomastown store selling the items for $1.00 each. As such I have photographic evidence of this. 30 . And, also how at many Bunnings stores pallets with goods are left in the walkways and then in case there is a fire customers might be trapped because of that. It seems to me Desi would do better to attend to house keeping in the store then to harass me about wanting to purchase items as advertised on the building and elsewhere at lowest prices. 35 Some stores (including Bunnings at Preston) have been selling numbers/letters in the wrong package. They were simply taped but the wrong letter/number was included then to which the bar
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code related to. I am not a person worried about it when I purchase them for $1.00 each but hey if Desi wants to make a fuss about my buying (and for personal reasons and not for commercial reasons) then let some of the facts correct. . 5 Originally I purchased the letters/numbers to spell my surname but when I came home discovered some were while and some grey. So, I went on a quest to get the name in one colour only. By this I succeeded but ended up with many letters in white that I had no need for. So, I decided to utilise them for other details such as my address, my titles, etc. And so my quest along Bunnings stores went to try to find the letters/numbers I needed. So, I started of wanting to have 10 about 22 for my name but now have more than 200 in use and have about another 50 spare. Albeit still need about another 10 or so. Because with the spare I try to make someone else and then obviously need more letters. When I go through the various Bunning stores I can see how one store had an article on a certain price and another store has no marked down price. But then when I check the price at the register for a price check it shows to be the same marked down price. As such, it is because I am alert to prices that I know. Recently I went to Stratco and purchased bolts discounted from about $4.49 to a mere 20 cents. I purchased the lot. About $38.00 worth. Then I purchased ward robed (9 of them) which were down from $169.00 to a mere $20.00. Nice for enclosing the back porch and have cabinets in them. Likewise, at IKEA I purchased 2 trollies loaded with boxes for $50.00 each. (Meaning $100.00 for the lot) Ok the boxes had doors in them that had glass in them and used to sell for about $200.00 each. But as it was the end of the line I got the bargain. I build a new kitchen to fit the doors! At Mitre 10 I offered $200 for a pallet of containers with screws, bolts, etc. First the manager refused but in the end he accepted. Well, the 12 inch bolts are everywhere in the sleepers I used to build a back and a front patio. So lets be clear about it, I purchased a lot of items generally that companies like to clear out, being dead stock or end of the line stock and I just use it for whatever. I build a water course and purchasing from Mitre 10 odds 90 by 90 beams of about 1 metre each I build a bridge over the water course and lights in it I purchased on discount from Bunnings. The pump also discount from Bunnings for $50.00 (normal price was $499) and, well I purchased the pumps at various Bunnings stores, as I want to create a further park in the backyard, so my wife can be safe in there without needing to go to a local park. . And, in the early part of the year I spend months after months collecting items from auctions, many trailer loads full of them and well my garage is bursting on its seams. So, when I purchased 2 granite slabs of 2.4 by 1.2 metres and had to collect them I had to build an A-frame. Then I had to later get the lot (more than 550 kg) of the trailer. And this on my own. Which I did in a very safe manner. Actually the mason asked if I was willing to sell back the marble plates to him for more than I had paid for them but I declined as I explained I never but items to sell.

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As such, whatever may have been with Desi let it be absolutely clear I never ever sold anything I purchased from the numerous stores or on auctions. I told a neighbour I would give him some paint as I purchased some 500 litres white pain for $54.00 on an auction, as he helps me to look 45 after my house in the country which one of my sons happen to have vandalised. Actually I promised the neighbour that he also will get my 78 record collection I spend decades collecting, as he happen to tell me that he only had 2 left after a divorce. So, I held I might as well give him mine. And, I told him I do not sell anything so he gets it for free, even so I spend a lot of money buying them.

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As I indicated above, I held first that Desi wanted to do the right thing with the company (Bunnings) but now that she carried on as she did on Friday 29 November 2013 I view that she went so to say overboard and a formal complaint should be made. . 5 It is none of my concerns if Bunnings has some kind of policy if they do or do not match discounted prices in another Bunnings store because to me where in large letters it is written that it provides the lowest prices then I view I am entitled to this, and in view it is another Bunning store and so Desi was able to check it, and I showed her previously the bunch of receipts I had showing the letters/numbers having been sold to me for $1.00 each, then her refusal to honour 10 this lowest prices (as she did previously) means Bunnings in my view is guilty of false, misleading and deceptive advertising. But, for her to insist I show my identity (of which staff made a copy of my driver license) so she would report me to security, to me was absurd. 15 So, is security now going to follow me as if I am some criminal? . Is security going to prevent me to purchase any further items from any Bunnings stores? . And this, not because I have been acting dishonest but because I was doing nothing more but 20 apply Bunnings advertising lowest prices. . As author of books in the INSPECTOR-RIKATI series of books about certain constitutional and other legal issues I can assure you my readers will be interested about this issue. Is Bunnings grossly dishonest in its advertising? 25 . I used to be in management of factories and house keeping for the safety of my workers was of primary importance. The following photo (not at Bunnings Preston) , while not showing an entire blockage, nevertheless in my view shows undue obstruction.

30 Ok Bunnings insurance company may not appreciate walkways being obstructed in such manner. A whole stack of pallets, for what?
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Oops, now we have a problem (Picture not taken at Bunnings at Preston store) This was the actual situation as recorded in the photo! 5 Imagine an emergency and the insurance company refuses to pay out because of obstructions preventing safe passage. More costly then any issue about my bargain hunting. And I collected a lot more of those kind of pictures of various Bunning stores over some considerable time, ever since my wife tripped in Preston store and nothing was done to get rid of the ridge in the concrete. 10 WorkSafe might be very interested in the lack of proper house keeping.

Can you see the slogan LOWEST PRICES (Thomastown building in this photo)
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As such the 10% and not the lowest prices is conditional. And the question is dies it includes another companies Stock liquidation as being a lower prices because surely Bunnings already 10 claiming to have the lowest prices would not refer to its own Stock liquidation that would be even lower then lowest prices!
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Thomastown even advertising for Masters, albeit claiming to have lower prices to some items.

5 This clearly shows the marked price of $1.00 each! Besides my receipts showing the same!
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So, besides looking for bargains I also have discovered what appears to be to me a misuse of the 93 barcode, as if Sandleford had the items packed in Australia it unlikely would have reverse N 5 packed as such. Likewise, wrong barcode to the product in the package. Safety issues that could become very costly to Bunnings, as insurance companies would love this kind of information to increase their insurance prices and may not pay out if such incidents are 10 directly or indirectly associated to a claim. (For the record I used to be a registered insurance agent some 35 odd years ago!) For the record I have got a lot more photos about unsafe conditions in various Bunning Stores. My (now 81 year old) wife didnt seek any kind of compensation but merely that the store would fix the problem with the different heights of the concrete plates, but this was never done, and so I 15 decided to record what I view dangerous situations, as I would come across them. In my view ACCC may also be interested in what I view to be false, misleading and deceptive advertising. Both I view by Bunnings and Sanbdleford using the 93 barcode for a product that appears to have been made and packed outside Australia. 20 Anyhow, Desi now having apparently reported me to security may just have tainted my name and damaged my character as if I am some criminal/thief, etc, where I did no more put pursue Bunnings to stick to its slogan lowest prices even if this was to match the price of another Bunning store. I will not wait for a few days to see how Bunnings, if at all, respond, before 25 considering if I should take it further. Awaiting your response, G. H. Schorel-Hlavka O.W.B. (Friends call me Gerrit)

MAY JUSTICE ALWAYS PREVAIL


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Our name is our motto!)

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