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Missing free seed packets

I was disappointed to find no free seed packets in my January issue of GW as promised. I was on the point of contacting GW to report this when, on a second reading of the magazine, on page 27, printed vertically in the margin in tiny font, I discovered a statement to the effect that, due to Brexit regulations, the seeds could not be delivered outside of mainland UK. I live in Northern Ireland. These regulations come into effect on 1 January 2021, so the chilli and rocket seeds could have been sent out with the January issue. Indeed, with some forethought, all six months of free seeds could have been included with this issue for those subscribers outside mainland UK.

In an article on page 20 it is reported that at lease one Northern Ireland garden centre has imported its spring stock ahead of Brexit. Forward planning of this sort would have prevented the problem non-mainland subscribers are experiencing. A potential solution might be for such subscribers to be issued with vouchers to be exchanged for seeds locally. At any rate I would ask that GW give some thought to the matter and keep it under review as such problems with the Brexit process are ironed out. A workaround should be possible given the will to find one.

My frustration is further exacerbated by the fact that I have taken out gift subscriptions as Christmas presents for two friends and this decision was partly influenced by the promise of free seeds for the next 6 months.
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  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 28,081
    I gave up my subscription to GW decades ago when I realised I was no longer getting the freebies but could buy the magazine with free seeds/trowels/whatever in the shops around Brussels when we lived in Belgium.  

    I very much doubt if the incoming restrictions on seeds are or were in the minds of the magazine's production staff as they will all be living in mainland UK and unaffected.

    This thread may be of interest to you, though too late now - https://forum.gardenersworld.com/discussion/1048376/uk-seeds-to-europe-and-northern-ireland-reminder/p1 
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • C45C45 Posts: 1
    David Irwin, like you I live in Northern Ireland and was very disappointed to find no free seeds attached to my GW magazine. I too searched for ages and eventually found the small font Brexit explanation vertically in the margin. I largely subscribe to the magazine for the subscribers' offer, which I now cannot buy or be sent. Is it acceptable to treat an entire nation of the UK as second class citizens, offer no information in advance that this problem would occur and offer no work-around or solution? Is our custom so little valued by GW?  
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 79,527
    I suspect the relatively recent uncertainty  around how Brexit will he implemented is causing some headaches for those who manage such things. 
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 47,198
    @C45 - I stopped buying the magazine a very long time ago. All the offers - ie GC vouchers or reduced entry to various places, were consistently for locations and outlets in England. I've often forwarded them to other people here. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • HelixHelix 704m altitude...Posts: 631
    edited January 2021
    I didn’t get the seeds either and have written to ask on what basis they feel they can’t send to places outside the UK.  As far as I can work out there are no restrictions on gifts (which is what free seeds should be!) to individuals as long as not restricted species.    As should be outside the regulations that govern commercial transactions.

    Perhaps we need a small campaign of overseas GW subscribers to protest...
  • leeleemurphleeleemurph IrelandPosts: 3
    I was also disappointed to not get any seeds. I'm in Ireland and to be honest I'm starting to wonder what the benefit of being a subscriber is? I get my magazine far later than if I went and bought it in the shop and now those of us overseas do not even get the benefits of the free items? It's a shame. 
  • I live in London and didn't get my seeds in the February issue!
  • AnniDAnniD South West UKPosts: 10,412
     @begonalugg I'm a subscriber in the UK and received the seeds. If you look at page 136 in the magazine, it gives you contact details if the seeds are missing :) .  
  • KT53KT53 South WestPosts: 6,843
    I was also disappointed to not get any seeds. I'm in Ireland and to be honest I'm starting to wonder what the benefit of being a subscriber is? I get my magazine far later than if I went and bought it in the shop and now those of us overseas do not even get the benefits of the free items? It's a shame. 

    The benefits of subscribing in the mainland UK are pretty marginal too.  Yes, we get the magazine earlier than the masses, but the reduced quantity of seeds plus the total lack of other 'free' items provided with the issue available in shops and newsagents make subscribing less and less appealing.  In general the magazine often seems to have more advertising than gardening content too.  I keep intending to cancel subscription and must actually get round to doing so.
  • Singing GardenerSinging Gardener EssexPosts: 1,197
    This year has been a bit different but I think I usually cover the subscription cost by using the 2for1 card and the 10% discounts for various companies.
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