Dobbies in Chesterfield was first opened in 2007 and it showed a new way forward for large garden centres. In reality it is a shopping mall with the gardening side very much a second best. Visit it and you will see where all the customers are lurking - in the cafe, gift and inside shopping area rather than outside amongst the plants. In winter there is almost no-one in the outside area, very different form many other garden centres.
The garden centre is situated in a shopping mall with a total area of 9,000 sq. metres and Dobbies occupy more than half of that. The plants area is large and full of plants bought in from other nurseries, some in the UK and some from Europe. There are lots of guiding signs to plant groups which is good because it would be easy to get lost in such a large area with so few staff to assist.
The plants themselves are of pristine quality with hardy plants having a five year guarantee. The choice is comprehensive although we couldn't identify any specialist areas. The paths are spacious, clear, solid and mainly on the level - no problems with wheel chair access.
The interior sales area is indistinguishable from a department store and is kept very clean and modern looking. Appearances are important to all Dobbies stores but even more so at Chesterfield. The displays are professionally arranged and aimed fairly and squarely at non-gardening customers. Don't get get us wrong though, if you need any gardening accessories then you'll find them at this store.
Prices of the plants are about average for a large garden centre but the prices in the other sales areas are slightly higher than normal, the price you inevitably pay for posh, up-market surroundings.
There are many independent retailers within the store including GBC Buildings (an excellent choice of garden sheds and greenhouses), Cotton Traders, The Edinburgh Woollen Mill, and a particularly impressive outlet for The Mobility One Stop Shop. The Food Hall is everything you would expect from a garden centre of this size and nature but prices are very high for the goods sold. The aquatics department is also large and well-stocked. Kids will love the display of fish.
Dobbies at Chesterfield have their own club card scheme (the Dobbies Group scheme) with various benefits for their members. Details of the club and a comparison with the clubs of other garden centres can be found by clicking here. If you are thinking of visiting this garden centre to make a purchase it may well be worth taking a look at their discounts and rewards.
The menu is extensive and caters for everything from full main meals, snack meals through to a drink and a cake. Service can be poor at peak times with longer than normal queues for paying.
The cafe was awarded five stars (highest rating possible) for Food Hygiene in September 2013 by Bolsover.
Other garden centres nearby include Staveley Hall Garden Centre which is dog friendly (Dobbies at Chesterfield is most definitely not dog-friendly) and Riverside Garden Centre with a well-regarded cafe.
EASTER OPENING TIMESMonday to Good Friday - 9.00am to 6.00pm
Easter Saturday - 9.00am to 6.00pm
Easter Sunday - CLOSED
Easter Monday - 9.00am to 6.00pm
CHRISTMAS OPENING TIMESChristmas Eve - 9.00am to 4.00pm
Christmas Day - CLOSED
Boxing Day - CLOSED
New Year's Eve - 9.00am to 5.00pm
New Year's Day - CLOSED
BANK HOLIDAY MONDAY OPENING TIMESIncludes May and August Bank Holiday:
Open 9.00am, closes 7.00pm
8 May 2014
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30 April 2014
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27 March 2014
Wyevale Garden Centres
buys 140th ...
05 March 2014
£2.4 million on food! ...
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takes Fermoy's lease ...
27 June 2013
14 June 2013
GCG buys Barton
21 May 2013
Sales down by 25%
for 2013 first quarter
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