Published: 00:01, 28 March 2014 |
Updated: 04:26, 28 March 2014
DIY chains and hardware stores across the UK have run out of traditional lap fencing as demand has been driven up by the gales which have battered the nation since December.
Del Peters, who owns Lakeside Timber in Napier Road, Gillingham, said they have had two instances where more than 300 panels have sold out in two days following high winds but now they can’t get hold of more supplies.
“We are waiting five or six weeks for panels,” he said. “We usually get them from a supplier in Shropshire but they can’t keep up with demand. We have been in business 25 years and it is the first time anything like this has happened.”
He added: “We can get a different kind of fence panel but they cost 50% more than the traditional ones so we either have to turn customers away or they have to pay for the dearer panels.”
It is a similar story at Payless Builders Merchants in Laker Road, Rochester, where they have seen the price of fence panels rise by 30%.
Managing director Kul Mattu said: “We just haven’t got the stock so we have had to turn people away. We haven’t been able to get any stock since January.
"We have had customers pay for orders and we are still waiting for supplies so we have had to stop that now and turn down custom.”
“We are witnessing demand that is upwards of five times the normal level” - John Gomersall at Forest Garden
It has been reported panels are now being offered on the black market, with some panic buyers paying up to £80 per panel - four times the usual price.
There are even reports of a spate of fence thefts as people turn to crime to replace damaged panels but police were unable to confirm if there has been a rise.
Forest Garden, which supplies fencing to Travis Perkins and Homebase in Chatham, and Dobbies Garden Centre in Gillingham, has taken on 100 new staff to keep up with demand.
Sales and marketing director John Gomersall said: “We are witnessing demand that is upwards of five times the normal level, and still increasing.”
Every morning at 10am we play you an hour of tunes from the 90s. We call it, #WeLoveThe90s.
Play 'Say It' with Garry and Laura on kmfm Breakfast and you could win £1,000!
Wake up to kmfm Breakfast with Garry and Laura - it's Kent's alarm call.
A guide for your future. For year 11 students in Kent and Medway. Click here for the e-edition.
Education, Training & Childcare is a special supplement published by KM Media Group four times a year. Click here for latest e-edition.
Get the latest food and drink news, recipes from some of the nation's top chefs plus updates from Kent's vineyards and breweries.
Search in your local area to find your perfect partner in Kent, with FreshStart Dating! PLUS, register for free!.
Find out what's going on in the garden, with Kent expert Lucy Hewett's weekly update.
Buy pictures that you've seen in a KM newspaper, or send in a picture and we will place it on our photo sales website so that you can purchase a super, unique gift.