/ Shopping

Have you managed to get a supermarket delivery?

With so many people now doing their shopping online, delivery slots have been hard to come by. Have you managed to get one over the last month?

Update 07/01/2021: Return to lockdown

Supermarkets have reassured customers that they have plenty of stock, and stressed the importance of shopping sensibly. With all four nations in lockdown and a return to shielding for many, we will be keeping a close eye on the situation with online delivery slots.

Do you have a recurring slot set up? Are you shielding or self-isolating and unable to get a slot? Have you found the situation better than during the Spring lockdown? 

How does your experience of booking a supermarket delivery during this lockdown compare to the first lockdown (March 2020)?

Better - I've had fewer issues and/or slots are more available (43%, 42 Votes)

Worse - I've founded it harder, and/or there aren't enough delivery slots available (36%, 35 Votes)

About the same as the first lockdown (20%, 19 Votes)

It's been different - tell us more in the comments (1%, 1 Votes)

Total Voters: 97

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14/04/2020: Have you managed to get a supermarket delivery?

Supermarket delivery slots have been described as ‘gold dust’ by one of our social media followers, and we know that many vulnerable people are concerned about how to get hold of the groceries they need. 

We’re working hard to provide advice and support for coronavirus-vulnerable households on how to get food deliveries.

Supermarkets say they’re doing what they can to get online delivery slots to the most vulnerable people, increasing slots and this week opening them up to extremely vulnerable non-customers.

But we’re aware that many of you may still be struggling, and we want to hear from you. 

Read all the latest COVID-19 news and advice on our dedicated hub

What are UK supermarkets doing?

It’s been widely reported that details of up to 1.5 million extremely vulnerable people would be shared by the UK Government with supermarkets in England.

Details of around 110,000 people who had requested support with getting food were shared with supermarkets on 3 April. 

But what about the other nations? On Wednesday (8 April) the Welsh government shared an equivalent list with supermarkets in Wales.

Prior to this we heard reports of people living within a few kilometers of each other, on either side of the border, using the same supermarket for their weekly shop, but with only the English resident being able to access priority delivery slots. 

At the time of writing, supermarkets in Northern Ireland and Scotland were yet to receive a list of high-risk people that have been told to shield. 

We want to know if you’ve been offered a delivery slot, if you were able to actually book one, and where you are. Which supermarket has contacted you, if any?

Do you know how to get the help you need?

The Which? retail team has been keeping on top of the shifting sands of announcements from government and the supermarket industry, but we have at times been left scratching our heads. 

Were you asked to shield because you are extremely vulnerable? Were you expecting to receive a letter but didn’t? 

Was it made clear to you in the letter how to get help with getting food? Have you managed to get the support you need? Where did the support come from – the supermarkets, a free food box, the community, or somewhere else?

Are you vulnerable and unable to get a delivery slot? Have you had to go to the supermarket?

How to shop safely at the supermarket

There are a lot of outstanding questions, but the more answers we get the more we’ll be able to help and inform the most vulnerable.

Has registering as a vulnerable consumer made it any easier to get a supermarket delivery?

No - I'm still struggling to get a delivery despite registering (47%, 1,249 Votes)

Yes - I'm able to get a supermarket delivery where I haven't been able to before (28%, 760 Votes)

Something else - tell us in the comments (25%, 672 Votes)

Total Voters: 2,681

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Comments
Jane Gott says:
26 May 2020

Hi Hannah, several weeks ago, back when the lockdown began (mid March) there was a shout out for 250 thousand volunteers to become helpers to the vulnerable. The respond far exceeded that amount – well done to our society. My husband and myself registered. We have a car each, both physically fit and able to run errands, do shopping etc. We received instructions about the app ‘Goodsam’, we set up our profiles and put ourselves in the ‘On Duty’ mode. Needless to say neither of us have been contacted for assistance. I once remained on duty for 30+ hrs, but no one wanted our assistance.

How familiar is this service to those you mention in your article? This would have been the answer to their shopping anxieties.

My wife is 82 and takes 7 tablets daily having had heart attack 16 years ago she is disabled also and cannot walk more than a few yards and uses wheelchair outside. I am 78 and relatively fit and her carer. When lockdown commenced I tried to get home deliveries from 3 Supermarkets without any luck. I then noticed on Sainsbury’s web-site that there was a link to get registered as vulnerable so followed link and it came up in Government Web-site which then gave you opportunity to register as vulnerable but in England only . I clicked on Wales link and there was no similar scheme in Wales . I then contacted my M.P. and my Assembly member and pointed out Wales was 3 weeks behind England. They contacted me and informed me that Wales was starting a scheme whereby a Clinically Vulnerable List was being drawn up and persons would be written to . This was the case but they sent a large number of letters to wrong address so I waited but no letter and MP informed my wife and I were not on the list. I managed with help of neighbours and relatives for 6 weeks before I started to get delivery slots . People like myself and wife seem to have been left in limbo by this system reference home delivery of groceries but we were advised to stay at home !!!

susan casswell says:
1 June 2020

We are overwhelmed by and very grateful for all the help we have received during lockdown. We are considered to be in the ‘vulnerable’category. Ages 71 and 84. We live in the quaint little backwater of Whithorn in remote SW Scotland 3 miles from the sea. We were unable to get delivery slots with Asda even though we had had weekly deliveries for over 10 years. There was no other delivery service in the area. Everyone rallied round to offer their help. and bring us everything we needed from small shops locally and small supermarkets 20 miles away. Now Morrisons has started to deliver and I am able to get almost weekly deliveries. Also as soon as someone manages to get a slot we all ask each other if they need anything and get it delivered with our own. Everyone pays via Bacs. The chemist delivers our prescriptions. Dumfries council can arrange for free grocery boxes to be delivered by volunteers where needed.We also swap plants, seeds etc locally by communication via FB We have met some lovely people (at a distant) who we would not otherwise.have met. Also UK wide we have sent our excess flour and yeast to friends and they have sent us seeds. An enterprising friend has been making superb quality face masks since day one and sending them internationally. I continue to teach Tai Chi , after myself and my students struggled with the new skill of ‘zooming’. We are so enjoying the unexpected advantages of lockdown!

Susan – It’s good to read such nice reports. The one segment of the population that doesn’t seem to be moaning much is the older generation. I wish I had been in my seventies throughout the last fifty years [although some people think I was].

Many of us can be very grateful for the efforts of supermarkets to help those of us who are not keen to venture in to a store. I have been amazed by the regional differences that I have heard of and the only sure way of being served has been to register with a number of supermarkets and consider click & collect to increase your options.

I wonder how many who have been using deliveries in the past few months will go back to shopping in stores when the threat of coronavirus is over.

I applaud the staff who have done their best to provide us with groceries etc. at this difficult time.

I have had home deliveries from a son for the last 10 weeks, sending him a shopping list via WhatsApp to add to their own delivery from Ocado. Will I return to store shopping? Most certainly. I’d far rather scan the shelves, spot something(s) to eat I might not have thought of, and be reminded of stuff I am running out of. I’m out of cakes and biscuits and ran very low on gin – overlooked essentials.

I make my own biscuits and prefer them to most of the supermarket offerings. The only odd substitution that I have received was granary flour instead of self-raising flour, so home-made cake has been off the menu. 🙁

It’s great being able to change an online order, adding items that have been forgotten and removing others that are not really needed.

There has been a lot of criticism of supermarkets for not providing delivery slots.
My experience with Waitrose has been quite different. I enjoy priority booking and have never failed to get a Saturday morning delivery since this crisis started. I have slots booked three weeks in advance,
There have been some item substitutions but nearly always acceptable ones.
I commend the Waitrose staff who have always been friendly and helpful

You are very fortunate, Roger. I have been trying since the middle of March and only recently did I manage to get a single Waitrose slot and my first order arrived half an hour ago. Ocado won’t even let me place an order, but at least I no longer have to wait two hours to be told that no slots are available.

I’m fully supportive of supermarkets prioritising those who are on the government list but we all have to eat and it would be foolhardy for some of us to go into a supermarket at the present time.

Laurence Harris says:
3 June 2020

We are among those self-isolating, aged 76 and 77 with serious health conditions, who have failed to obtain priority deliveries even though we are in the high risk category. Waitrose customer service has been surprisingly poor or, effectively, non-existent in our case despite my wife belonging to their My Waitrose loyalty scheme.

Having signed up on the UK government website for the extremely vulnerable as soon as instructed, my wife has received no slots for priority deliveries from Waitrose. Finally we managed to contact Waitrose customer service and received a pro forma email on 30 April saying that they would be in touch in 14 days, then another form letter saying they would be in touch after a further 14 days. So far we have heard nothing.

This is particularly galling since we live in a small mansion block, and all the residents who are over 70 but have no underlying health conditions have been using priority slots since they were first opened.

We would like to know what criteria Waitrose have used to determine the slots. And specifically why my wife’s requests for explanation and remedy of an apparent fault in meeting the intentions of the priority scheme have been effectively ignored.

I’m also fed up with Waitrose. I’ve had a shielding letter; I’ve also been a regular shopper at my local Waitrose store since it opened – at least 8 years – and I have a My Waitrose card. Initially I was prepared to give them some time to get their act together, but it’s galling after over 2 months to read in their FAQs about how they are prioritising slots for vulnerable customers, but to be unable to book one – I see just the few days worth of slots that “ordinary” customers see, and they are always fully booked. Tonight I tried phoning their Customer Services but after hearing their message that says “we’ll get in touch with you, you don’t need to do anything” I hung up – I could have starved to death by the time they get round to me!
I managed to get a non-priority slot with Tesco a couple of weeks ago, and they have some available now for around June 20th. What’s more, my neighbour has been bringing me fresh food from Asda and I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the quality (e.g. a delicious organic free range chicken the other week) so I think Waitrose may be seeing less of me when the pandemic is over.

vanessa zammutt says:
6 June 2020

Even though my husband received a letter from the government as being extremely vulnerable. He has been registered as well we still have not received any food parcels . Due to mobility issues im not able to go out shopping either. Getting delivery slots from supermarkets is not easy .often i have to wait up till early hours of the morning to get a delivery slot

Hi Vanessa – I suggest you register with other supermarkets that deliver in your area and see if any of them have slots available. A lot will depend on where you live but it should be getting easier by now.

Pam Whittaker says:
8 June 2020

I have found the best time to book a slot was about 7 days before I required a delivery. There is only one week showing with slots available, ie. for the next 7 days from when I look. I have not had any problem getting a delivery and I registered early with Sainsburys who have been fantastic. A few odd ‘replacement’ items are delivered, but who cares as long as we get the majority of our order.

My family and I have been shielding for the past 13 weeks due to being on the venerable list. We originally struggled getting supermarket delivery slots until we joined this website.

SupermarketDeliverySlot.co.uk

They send you unlimited. notifications when a slot is available for you. No we don’t have to spend all day searching the supermarket websites searching for slots.

I have been very disappointed by the lack of support from online supermarket Ocado. I am a career for my husband, 86, and I finished cancer treatment just before the lockdown. We are not shielded and as I am able to drive, do not consider us as vulnerable, compared to some people. However there must be many thousands of customers like us who ‘fall through the net’ and have suffered as a result. I started online shopping with Ocado in January 2020, and since 20 March 2020 I have had 5 deliveries. I emailed the CEO in April to ask why it was so difficult to get a delivery and was told that I was not a loyal customer who had priority along with those who were shielded.
Ocado claims to be the world’s largest dedicated online supermarket, yet it suspended operations in March as it was unable to meet the demands of its customers due to the pandemic. After receiving an email a couple of weeks ago that I could now book deliveries 21 days in advance, I looked at the website specifically for difficult to get items which were shown as available, but after immediately booking a delivery these same items were described as ‘unavailable’.
I have asked Ocado to comment on this but have not to date received a reply. Today their website has reverted to a message that I will be contacted by email when a delivery slot is available.

We live in Scotland and have eventually managed to get registered for priority slots with Tesco but this still means only a delivery every few weeks. I had originally registered to get one of the free food boxes and this was a good stopgap while Tesco sorted themselves out. However the free food boxes were very basic and very repetitive. Six weeks in a row we were faced with 4 tins of tomato soup, 2 tins of beans, a pasta sauce bake (based on tomatoes) and a tin of passata or similar. And every week a tin of chicken meats balls. White bread, no butter or similar spread. It was depressing and I think that has put me into a downward spiral that is proving difficult to get out of. And now we are expected to continue this until the end of July. I wrote to my MSP and the First Minister but have been ignored. I suppose I should have been grateful.

Hi Neil – I suggest registering with all the supermarkets that deliver in your area and if you drive, the click & collect options may offer more chance of getting a slot. Which supermarket has most availability will depend on where you live and my own experience is very different from friends who live in other areas. From being unable to place an order in mid-March, the situation has gradually improved and there is a very good availability of slots. No-one should be expected to eat white bread. Best of luck.

12 06 2020

WAITROSE – “SUPPORTING THE ELDERLY & VULNERABLE” 🙁 🙁

WHICH MAGAZINE

So pleased that someone is taking up this very serious problem.

My wife and I (86 and 85) filled outt tthe GOV.UK form 10 or 11 WEEKS ago. [edit] Both in lockdown from the very start, with Parkinson’s and Heart problems.

We have contacted Waitrose HQ many times, both on the phone and e-mail.

We have spoken face to face with the local branch (Marlborough) manager, who SAID that he would take up te case with his HQ………But again nothing.

We have submitted the ‘Waitrose’ special (twice)……But still nothing.

It’s a complete NIGHTMARE..

[We are in] very rural Wiltshire

PS: We ‘get by’ with a local Garden Center, and an Open all Hours corner shop in Upavon [edited].

[Moderator: we’ve edited this comment to remove personal contact details. Please don’t post these, regardless of whether they’re you’re own or those of others. If you need to contact the Which? Conversation team in a less public space, please see the Contact Us page.]

Despite being housebound and 100% reliant on online Tesco slots for 5yrs and paying for the advance bookings too (still active) I ended with no chance of my regular slots for years when my carer is here to help put away or any slots at all. Ignored by every dept I tried for help but eventually placed on a local volunteer shopper scheme where I could pay back by bank transfer when my MP refered me. Carers can only shop with cash and I have no way to access cash. Volunteer scheme has been my life saver but …. it now ends after this week leaving me yet again physically disabled, unable to get out without help for years, no relatives to help, unwell with shingles (lowered immune system) and also have PTSD, COPD but not bad enough to qualify, tachycardia and still no way to access cash to send the carer. Second wave sounds imminent … so right now I still cannot risk going out with the carer either and due to queueing systems it would most likely exceded the time I am allowed a carer too. Extreme frustration and very very worried are mild words to say how anxious and sick to the stomach it makes me feel knowing I cannot access food any other ways and be able to pay other than on line, missing slots even if I sit to midnight weeks before the slot is due just to stay fed. They know I have been a regular housebound customer for years. The life line ends this week. It will be weeks before I can get a slot even if I can acccess one at all. Is it any wonder I am ill?

Rick says:
24 June 2020

Hi, there are other options.

Morrisons sell a £35 Food Box that doesn’t require a typical delivery slot as it gets sent by courier. Have a look at their site.

If you have Amazon Prime Now in your area, they can do same day grocery deliveries. Their bandwidth seems to be quite high because I’ve not struggled to get slots through the whole lockdown, where every other store — Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury, Morrisons (with slots), Ocado, Waitrose etc — has failed me.

P.G says:
19 June 2020

i am classed as clinically vulnerable, but not clinically extremely vulnerable, as is my husband. As such we were advised to shield but not given a letter. The first few weeks of lockdown were a nightmare, we hadn’t stockpiled ‘in advance’ and we couldn’t get a shopping slot anywhere. I started buying food on Amazon, but it was expensive and you had to buy in bulk. We had no milk, eggs, cheese, fresh veg or fruit everyday staples. Luckily our district council hooked us ip with a local lady who started doing dome shopping for us, and i managed to get milk delivered sporadically, and this is how things continue. I am SO grateful to the lady doing my shopping. i registered my mother in law, aged 93 with asthma, as extremely vulnerable in week 1 of lockdown, she received her first food parcel on week 11!! Luckily her neighbours saw her need for help and started doing some shopping for her before this, otherwise she could well have starved.

I have been very impressed with the efficiency of Tesco click & collect sessions but that changed yesterday evening. It started well and I was invited to drive into the collection point at the appointed time and I was told that I everything I had ordered was available, as it has been recently.

First we had a bottle of spirits with the security tag still attached and then there were overfilled thin plastic bags rather than fewer goods in stronger bags as usual. (I now have enough Tesco Bags for Life for the rest of my life.). After loading my car I realised that the member of staff was searching the van to no avail, phoning a friend and then apologetically announcing that most of the goods destined for my fridge must be in another van that had departed to do deliveries. The next customer had the same problem. I hope I will receive a refund on Monday morning. It looks as if it will be a good time to defrost the fridge because there is not much left in it. 🙂

Do I go back to Tesco and hope and hope that past performance will be restored, choose Morrisons which has had limited stocks during the pandemic, or Waitrose that appears to have good stocks but provides so many substitutes that you wonder if you have received someone else’s order.

At least there is the freezer and cartons of UHT milk.

Ocado still has many products out of stock. I also do deliveries for my parents and who would have thought tinned corned beef, tinned fruit, Instant Whip, Jellies and Sherry were in such great demand? 😣 They are frequently out of stock. I never realised the liquid in most tinned fruit is unhealthy syrup instead of juice.

One week I refused the flour substitutes and groceries were on the lawn and turned upside down as the driver tried to find them. I will just accept them in future but why they don’t bag them separately?

I have discovered I like coffee mate in coffee and I get no unpleasant side effects from it. I am not going to worry about the ingredients too much as I usually only drink one cup a day.

I think all the supermarkets that are undertaking deliveries are absolutely overwhelmed because many who now have deliveries have switched from shopping at one of the stores that don’t do deliveries.

We have limited ourselves to ordering once a fortnight to take the pressure off but are now finding that so much is short-dated that it is getting difficult to plan meals.

I have been using click & collect where there is more availability and it should make life easier for those dependent on deliveries. I did have problems with poor quality/short dates on one delivery but the rest have been fine. Lack of stock of items that I normally buy remains a problem. I have moved from fortnightly to weekly orders now that slots are readily available.

Ocado was the first supermarket I tried because I had vouchers for free delivery, but they would not have me, yet they manage to give some people weekly deliveries.

Sue Budd says:
23 June 2020

Dear Hannah

Your article in the June 2020 edition rang so many bells for me. I live in Cyprus and my mother, who is 97 and has early stage dementia, now lives in a wonderful Care Home in Andover, Hampshire. As it is a relatively small Home their regular groceries are ordered online from Tesco twice a week. At the start of the panic buying crisis Tesco, in their wisdom, decided they were no longer going to deliver to the Home. This meant that 20 frail and extremely vulnerable elderly residents plus the staff appeared to have been placed into a “non essential “ category and the Manageress herself was forced to queue with the general public two or three times a day to be able to buy sufficient milk, bread, veg and fruit for the Home, limited to two of each item per visit. How ridiculous is that when visitors were prevented from visiting the residents as a measure to stop the virus entering the Home? Not only was this a dreadful waste of time for someone under masses of pressure already but mixing with the public was exactly what they were desperate to avoid.

In an effort to help I tried to buy as many of the required items as I could through Sainsbury’s online. I previously bought my mum’s shopping this way before she moved to the Home and Sainsbury’s had contacted me telling me my mother had been highlighted as vulnerable. For two weeks I bought whatever was available and used a priority delivery slot but after that, although I had numerous emails from Sainsbury’s informing me how helpful they were being to increasing numbers of vulnerable customers, there were no slots ever available. I tried throughout the night and early morning for weeks and eventually gave up.

I wrote to Adult Services pointing out this unbelievable situation and was directed to information for NHS Care Homes and places to buy large quantities, no use in this case as there is insufficient storage to buy in huge quantities.

The manager of the local Tesco was not willing or able to help and for several weeks this completely unacceptable shopping routine continued until a letter from the GP finally initiated some improvement. The manageress was now allowed to buy larger quantities at each visit and was given priority at the till. In the meantime some items could be bought using Asda’s “click & collect” service.

These care workers have dedicated their whole lives to looking after these elderly residents throughout this pandemic by doing nothing other than going to work and going home. No outings or shopping or visiting family – just taking care of these frail and vulnerable people, doing their best to shield them from this awful virus. They all deserve our sincere thanks and a massive bonus.

Tesco and Sainsbury’s on the other hand need locking up for being so intransigent and insensitive.

VB says:
26 June 2020

I’ve been able to get regular tesco deliveries throughout the worst of this, but all of a sudden they’ve disappeared. Only click and collect available and even then they go quickly. Not sure what has changed. They say they’ve added more click and collect and I’m wondering if they’ve reduced the quantity of available delivery slots. Tried the click and collect and wasn’t impressed. No masks, poor social distancing by staff.

Whilst. I would not call myself vunerable. I’m 71 & had shingles just as lockdown came. So do not want to shop at my local store. Neighbours were good for the 1st few weeks then I got a home delivery, lasted 3 weeks then could get no slots, & then it was sometimes a fortnight before I got another one. So I tried click & collect & for a couple of weeks it was fine. I’m now back to square one ,can’t get a slot for a month? I rang Tesco’s as have been shopping there for years. I was told they would put me on a list, only guess what?they haven’t. I rang the store again ,unless you have a letter from the government we cannot put you on the priority list! I’m sure I’m not the only one who doesn’t want to go into a store. I’m not at all happy I live on my own & have no family local.

Hi Janet – I suggest you register with other online supermarkets that provide click & collect or delivery. Round here I can now get both, but click & collect offers more slots.

There are many support groups around the UK and when I thought that I would never get a slot I rang the local number and they offered to do shopping for me. It was not necessary but very good to know that people are prepared to help: https://covidmutualaid.org/local-groups/ Obviously this is only useful if you have a local group.

I did comment yesterday however there has been further developments in which Tesco are making it harder for people aged 70 & live on their. Apparently they have what’s called a super saver, which they abolished in lockdown & are now bringing back. This means if you are a super saver you are going to be able see a months available slots & book.
I have shopped with Tesco’s for years & have never heard of this scheme. The likes of me who would like to see available slots won’t be able to & They are not letting the likes of me to sign up to this scheme. SO WHERE DOES THAT LEAVE ME?
I am being forced to go into the supermarket because I cannot get a slot. This is totally, totally wrong. I am totally disgusted & shows Tesco’s do not care for their customers who I might add have been with them for years!

Hello again Janet. Tesco have a ‘Delivery Saver’ scheme which is still suspended for new customers as can be seen from this page: https://www.tesco.com/DeliverySaver/ Presumably existing online customers see more slots when they go online.

I’m lucky because I see I can now book a Tesco click & collect within two days, though I would have to wait a week for delivery. On the other hand, Ocado have never let me have a single booking since I registered in March. Their existing customers can order once a week, perhaps more often.

The supermarkets have done some things to help all customers, such as restricting the sale of certain popular goods, but surely it is our government that is to blame for not intervening. They have rightly prioritised customers that are on the government list as being extremely vulnerable, but in areas where it is difficult to get slots they could have:

> limited online orders to one every 10 days per address, including regular customers
> asked customers to choose click & collect if possible, freeing up vans for those who need deliveries

Are you not able to order from another supermarket? Morrisons has by far the best availability round here, even though their product range has been greatly restricted from pre-Covid times.

I think the basic problem affecting all supermarket deliveries is that they just do not have the capacity to cope with the huge increase in demand for deliveries. Although certain competition rules have been suspended for them so that they can optimise the use of resources they are not sharing customers around to spread the load and make deliveries more efficient and economical by dealing with each area, or each road, collectively on a specific day of the week.

It would be necessary to set up a government-organised clearing house to overcome that problem [a job for one of the favoured facility management companies like Serco, Group4, or Capita no doubt].

Given that everyone was supposed to be staying at home it has been ridiculous that people have been able to choose a time-slot meaning that Sainsbury’s [for example] are delivering to our road three times on some days.

The problem that no one has dared to tackle is that many deliveries are for households that could manage to visit the store or do click-&-collect but have been a regular delivery customer in the past so continue to enjoy that convenience. It might be commercial logic but it deprives a more needy customer of service.

In requesting a delivery service people naturally contact their nearest supermarket or the one they usually shop at. It could sometimes be better to contact all those who do cover the area, possibly from stores further away, to see whether an alternative choice might be more convenient. I have found that our Sainsbury’s deliveries come from a hub store several miles away on the outskirts of Norwich that also services the North Norfolk coast and parts of Suffolk.

It’s certainly possible to choose where to do a click & collection (C&C), though with deliveries the stores can choose what suits them best.

Although increasing delivery capacity would require more vans and staff, offering more C&C slots could be easier if run in the way done by our local Morrisons. They have expanded their C&C parking outside the back door and a member of staff brings out a stack of crates on a trolley. One of the benefits is that if you are given a problem item (this morning it was a leaking bottle of milk and a dodgy melon) it is simple to get the goods exchanged on the spot. Obviously what is possible will depend on the layout of the supermarket and parking.

As far as I’m concerned, Boris can go for a running jump if he expects me to go into a shop at present. I take your point that any management of supermarkets would probably be delegated to an outside organisation, but it would be easy for the government to ask the public and supermarkets to help ease the situation I have outlined above, and to tell people like Janet and everyone else who has struggled in the past few months.

It’s interesting what you say about delivery hubs, John, because friends around the country have said the same, but round here most of the vans seem to be coming direct from some supermarkets.