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Photo of the outside Blackwell's Oxford Road

Shop local with Blackwell’s same-day delivery service

Blackwell’s have just launched a new same-day delivery service in Manchester. The service offers competitive prices and same-day delivery for customers in a 2-mile radius.

The Manchester Blackwell’s has been a key part of my university experience as a literature student. It has been my go-to shop for buying my course book bundles, stationary essentials and new fiction. The new Oxford Road store is a joy to visit. The bookshop received a serious glow up last year when it relocated from its temporary setup to the ground floor of the Alliance Manchester Business school.

I spoke to David, who works as the sales and events manager at the Manchester branch, in order to find out how they’ve been impacted by coronavirus, and to get the details on their same-day book delivery service.

Q&A with David from Blackwell’s Manchester

How has Blackwell’s Manchester been impacted by lockdown and coronavirus?

We’ve very much felt the impact of coronavirus. The Manchester store is primarily a student bookshop. Our core customer base is both the local universities, so with no students on campus we’re really noticing the difference. September and October are normally the busiest months for us as we see students return to campus. During this time we would usually run pop up stalls, and work closely with lecturers to promote book bundles. The coronavirus restrictions mean we’ve had to put all of that on hold.

Our shop also tends to receive a huge amount of business from international students, but as a result of remote learning that has dropped off.

But, it was really positive that a lot of people got back into reading during lockdown. The Blackwell’s website nearly buckled under the pressure and demand earlier in the year.

What impact do you think the imposition of tier three lockdown on Manchester will have on its arts and culture scene?

It will have a huge impact. The Manchester branch is surrounded by big venues including Manchester Academy and Deaf Institute both of which are unable to open. I think there’s going to be a big impact on the smaller pubs especially now the government wants us all to have a ‘substantial meal’. I’ve already noticed that a few local pubs have been forced to shut, and lots are struggling to stay open. On a personal level I like to go to a couple of gigs every week, but that hasn’t happened since March. Gigs, clubs and pubs are such a big part of student life.

What was your favourite lockdown read?

Boy Parts by Eliza Clark. It was so great to read. I noticed a lot of the reading community picked up the same books during lockdown, and Boy Parts was definitely one of those books.

Blackwell’s same-day book delivery service

How does the Blackwells same-day delivery service work?

So if we’ve got the book in stock, and you live within a 2 mile radius of Blackwell’s Oxford Road, we can drop it off using our same-day delivery service. Just phone up before 3pm to receive same-day delivery. We take payment over the phone when you call to order. The same-day delivery service includes books, but also stationary and games to keep you busy during isolation.

Our delivery driver sets off at around 3:15pm, so if you order a book at 2:30pm you could receive it an hour later. The deliveries begin in the early afternoon and run into the evening. We can drop off to the main student hubs including Fallowfield, Chorlton, Withington and Victoria Park (to name a few). The service is getting quite busy now which is great to see. University lecturers have been really helpful in promoting the service.

Why did Blackwell’s decide to set up the service?

The service came off the back of the MMU lockdown. We want to be able to help students in the local area, so we’ve been throwing in some gift packs for students who use the service. But they’re only available while stocks last.

Is there an extra charge for the service?

There is no extra cost for postage, and it’s free delivery.

Are you able to drop off books to students isolating in halls?

Yes we can drop off to students in halls. The delivery driver drops off the parcel to the reception area in halls. We always use contact free delivery, and we take payment over the phone.

Please support Blackwell’s and other local bookshops. It’s time to ditch ordering books from Amazon Prime and opt for Blackwell’s same-day delivery service.

Tags: blackwell's, coronavirus, delivery, local business, lockdown

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