Worktop Express Blog

As experts in our field, it is incredibly important that we provide our customers with the support they need – from offering guidance on obtaining measurements to giving advice on the best aftercare methods to ensure our products are enjoyed as thoroughly as possible.

One of our sales managers, Jade, has kindly completed a diary to show us a typical day in her life at work to show us more about the work that goes into delivering the best service to our customers.

7:32am

I have just arrived at work – I’m on the morning shift today so I’ll need to be available on the phone for 8am when our sales lines open. I have a little while to make sure my computer is logged on and grab a drink before I need to start doing any work. I have a lot to do, including highlighting the task list to the sales team so everybody knows what to do, picking up voicemails to ensure customers that called outside our office hours are contacted, updating the call wall board, sorting out the rota and phones to make sure we have people available when we need them!

11.02am

A busy morning! I am trying to work through some of the emails in the sales team inbox now whilst there is a short lull in the phone lines – calls usually pick up again when people break for lunch so it will be best if I can get ahead now. We have an internal messaging system to make sure everybody has access to the information they need, so I will also take the opportunity to answer some messages here.

12.30pm

Lunchtime already – where has the morning gone? We stagger our lunches so that we have as many people free as possible to answer calls, and the afternoon shift have also arrived to provide some backup too which is great. I have managed to go on lunch on time today, I have made some time this afternoon to assist the fabrication team respond to some emails and get CAD drawings of bespoke worktops sent out to customers.

1.47pm

Our sales team is based in Gloucestershire, which is also the location of one of our showrooms. Lauren, the showroom manager, has some work to catch up on so I go over to the showroom so that I can be available when we have customers. I am always happy to help as she often takes calls when the sales team are under pressure and it means we are offering the best service we can to our customers. Our Gloucestershire showroom has a raised breakfast bar on display which is hugely popular.

3.01pm

Back at my desk and I am logging into our live chat now – we get such a variety of queries, no two days are ever the same which is something I love about my job.

4.04pm

That is me done for the day and I am off home – ready to spend the evening relaxing before coming back tomorrow to start over and do it all again! Bye!

Want to know more about what goes on behind-the-scenes here at Worktop Express? The first part in our Forest to Front Door series, featuring Lisa from Purchasing is available to read now. Stay tuned for the next part in our series by signing up to our newsletter and following us on Facebook and Twitter for exclusive content.

Unicorn-inspired kitchens are one of 2018’s most popular trends so far, with pastel colours and sparkle taking centre stage. Searches for pink kitchen accessories, pink paint and gold kitchen accessories have drastically increased this year – the latter is up by an enormous 235%. But how can you create a unicorn kitchen in your home?

Pastel Castle

The first thing to consider is the colour of your walls. Opt for a pastel pink or blue shade to tie the theme together, while making the room feel light, airy and playful. A unicorn kitchen theme can be tailored to your individual taste, by choosing to go for a bold look and thoroughly repaint the room or focus on a feature wall for a more subtle design. Selected pastel-coloured accessories will add extra unicorn touches without feeling too retro.

Glitter and Sparkle

Add a sprinkle of magic to mealtimes with sparkly additions. Tiles and splashbacks are the ideal place to introduce a bit of glamour – they are right in your eyeline and illuminated by your kitchen lights. Choose a metallic or iridescent finish to allow your cook space to be as eye-catching as possible. In this kitchen, the glasses and accessories are almost hidden by the splashback, which consists of hundreds of small, iridescent tiles.

Worktops

A unicorn theme needs a suitable worktop to match – even mystical creatures need countertop space. Our marble effect and white sparkle laminate worktops are the perfect surfaces if you are planning an upgrade, and will look fantastic alongside pastel walls and sparkling splashbacks. These worktops suit both modern and contemporary kitchen schemes and are as durable as they are attractive.

Accessories

Complete the look of your unicorn kitchen with these accessories. Pastel coloured accessories will complement the colour of the walls but – for a more dramatic look – rainbow metallic utensils will add an extra shimmer to your cook space. The items in this picture have a beautiful colour-changing appearance and will glow when you are cooking.

Together, these elements will produce a kitchen inspired by unicorns, but there are many products available that include pictures of the creatures. Would you have a unicorn kitchen? Tell us your thoughts below, or share on Facebook and Twitter.

Treat yourself to something a bit bigger than a chocolate egg this Easter weekend. Now is the perfect time to update your kitchen with our solid wood, laminate or earthstone worktops – you will be pleased to know you are able to visit one of our showrooms over the Easter period. Each one has a wide range of surfaces and kitchen styles for you to compare, and you can get advice from our knowledgeable staff members.

Our opening times are changing for Good Friday (30th March 2018) and Easter Monday (2nd April 2018). Both our phonelines and showrooms will be open from 10am until 2pm, so please do not try to contact or visit us outside of these times. We will be closed on Easter Sunday.

On Saturday 31st March, our eight showrooms will be open as usual with unchanged opening times. All locations will be open to visit between the hours of 9am and 5pm – except our Camden showroom, which is open between 9.30am and 6pm. Our customer support phonelines are also open between 9am and 5pm.

We look forward to seeing you over the Easter weekend!

Sustainability is a core part of our business here at Worktop Express. All of our solid wood worktops and worktop accessories are created using wood that has been harvested renewably. We are also involved in tree planting and conservation schemes across the globe. Forests are undeniably important for everyone on the planet, and it is estimated that an area of trees the size of England is cut down every year.

We are celebrating the United Nations’ International Day of Forests, which falls on Wednesday, 21 March 2018. The day – celebrated since 2013 – raises awareness of deforestation issues and tree conservation. This year’s theme is ‘Forests and Sustainable Cities’, and focuses on making urban environments greener and healthier.

The UN is promoting 11 different key messages as part of the International Day of Forests, including how trees can act as a natural air conditioner – not only filtering out pollution, but being able to cool the temperature down by as much as eight degrees and reducing climate change.

Trees help to reduce noise pollution, and can store water in their branches and soil. Consequently, they can help prevent flooding and regulate water supply. On a more personal level, urban green spaces encourage healthy lifestyles, generate tourism and encourage the beautification of the local area.

The UN’s other key messages can be found on their website, and you can read more about our ongoing sustainability policy here.

There are many events taking place worldwide to mark the day, including tree plantings, art exhibitions and photo competitions. Join in the conversation on social media with the hashtag #IntlForestDay.

How are you celebrating the International Day of Forests? Share your ideas below, or let us know on Facebook and Twitter.

At Worktop Express, we are proud of the quality and service we provide at the low prices we offer. From now until Friday 23rd March, you can save up to £85 on orders of £300 with our free delivery deal – and it could not be easier to take advantage of this promotion. All you need to do is add the products you require into your online shopping cart. When your order total – excluding delivery costs – reaches £300, your free delivery will be automatically applied. This promotion is also available if you would prefer to order via telephone, email or in one of our nationwide showrooms.

We use our very own in-house 2Man delivery teams to minimise the risk of damage to your worktops during transit and ensure your items arrive promptly and efficiently. A two-hour timeslot is provided and our drivers will try to call you en route to update you when they are half an hour away.

All products on our website, whether you are interested in our solid wood worktops, laminate worktops, accessories or shelves, are included in this offer. Please note that this saving is only applicable for our standard delivery areas within England, Scotland and Wales, and does not include our 1Man Saturday service. To check your postcode is eligible, please visit our delivery details page.

This offer expires on Friday 23rd March at 23:59, so order now if you want to benefit from this generous saving!

Tuesday may not be the most exciting day of the week, but our latest competition is sure to make yours more appealing.

Constructed from the same exceptional quality timbers as our solid wood worktops, our solid wood chopping boards are durable enough to withstand daily use in busy homes. A low maintenance choice, they look fantastic in any style of kitchen.

If you would like to win one of our chopping boards, you may be in luck! We are giving one away every single Tuesday, and it could not be simpler to enter this competition. All you need to do is head over to our Twitter page, retweet our latest #ChoppingBoardTuesday post and follow us. We will pick a winner at random but, if you do not win, there will be another chance next Tuesday!

Following us on Twitter will ensure you stay up to date with our latest news, promotions and product launches. Why not follow us on Facebook too? For more on our latest deals and promotions, you can also visit our current offers page.

A slice of banoffee pie topped with banana pieces and toffee sauce

Credit : Wiki Commons

Serves 12

Prep time: 1hr 30 minutes (including 1hr chilling time)

Cooking time: 1 minute

It appears that many of you have a sweet tooth, as banoffee pie came out on top in our very accurate British Pie Week Quiz. We have a very easy-to-follow recipe for this rich and sweet dessert treat, originally from Carnation. It uses mostly household items; a non-stick saucepan and a 20cm cake tin, and your children will definitely want to help out – especially as there is a spoon they can lick!

If you would rather not make the caramel, a tin of ready-made caramel sauce will work too.

Ingredients:

  • 175g butter
  • 225g light digestive biscuits
  • 75g dark brown soft sugar
  • 400g can condensed milk
  • 2 medium-sized bananas
  • 150ml whipped cream
  • Cocoa powder (to decorate)
  • Lemon juice (optional)

How to make the best banoffee pie:

  1. Crush the digestive biscuits so they are as small as possible, either using a kitchen mixer or by putting the biscuits in a freezer bag (or similar) and crushing with a rolling pin. Melt 100g of the butter, and mix with the biscuit crumbs.
  2. Grease the cake tin and spoon the mixture into it. Make sure you evenly cover the bottom and sides of the tin, as this is the base of the pie. Then, leave it to chill in the fridge for ten minutes.
  3. Melt the rest of the butter and the sugar in a non-stick saucepan over a low heat, and stir continuously until the sugar has completely dissolved. Add the condensed milk and quickly boil it for about a minute, while still stirring, to get a rich, gooey caramel.
  4. Spread the caramel evenly over the base and leave to cool. Once it’s cooled, chill it for an hour or until it is firm. Take the base and caramel out of the tin and put on a serving plate.
  5. Slice the bananas and put half on top of the caramel layer, and then fold the remaining banana slices into the whipped cream. Spoon this mixture onto the pie and decorate with some more banana, grated chocolate, cocoa powder or caramel dessert sauce.

Our top tips:

Boil the caramel filling for a minute or more to make sure it has the perfect consistency and, if you are topping the pie with more bananas, a dash of lemon juice will stop them going brown.

Have you made this?

If you have made this banoffee pie, let us know how it went on Facebook or Twitter We doubt there will be much left after you have served it – this delicious pie will be a family favourite!

Over the last two weeks, we have invited our customers to share pictures of their worktops with us, for a chance to win some fantastic prizes including a Kitchen Aid Mixer worth £500 and £100 to spend at Worktop Express.

We are delighted at the high calibre of entries we have received which showcase a variety of our surfaces in a number of different styles and settings. Our worktops have not been limited to life in the kitchen – submissions included bathroom worktops, desks, furniture and even a bed! ! Our judging panel had the unenviable (and very difficult) task of choosing the winner and two runners-up who went head-to-head in our Facebook poll

Iza Filipek has been picked as the lucky winner of our competition, and her outstanding cooking area – complete with one of our Black American Walnut worktops – has won her a brand-new Kitchen Aid Mixer and £100 to spend on our website.

In our Facebook poll, followers of our page put Lauren in second place, who shared a lovely picture of her kitchen – featuring one of our low-maintenance Colmar Oak laminate worktops – and has won £100 in Amazon vouchers. Olly’s kitchen came in third place, with its iroko worktop and mixed flooring, winning him a £50 Amazon voucher.

Congratulations to our winners, and thank you to everyone that entered! If you were unsuccessful on this occasion, please make sure you like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter to stay up to date with the latest events at Worktop Express. You can also find details of any current promotions on our current offers page. To see some more fantastic kitchens sent in to us, check out our Customer Kitchen Wooden Worktop Gallery.

This week is British Pie Week, and we have created perhaps the world’s first worktops and pie quiz to see which you should enjoy! Simply select the options to create your dream kitchen, and we will tell you which pie you will enjoy the most this pie week. Will it be steak, fish or something else entirely? We would love to know if we got it right! Share your answer with us on Facebook and Twitter – we will be sharing a simple to follow (and very tasty!) recipe of the most popular pie, so make sure you keep up to date with us!


As the UK’s leading online wooden worktop specialist, we are committed to ensuring that the timber we use is sourced and harvested responsibly. We regularly conduct thorough checks to certify that our wood is sustainable, and – as part of our pledge to consider the environment in everything we do – we also support the work of the International Tree Foundation (ITF) in Africa and the UK.

Worktop Express is proud to support ITF and Community Assistance in Development (COMAID), in their Dom Community Food project in Cameroon’s Bamenda Highlands. Home to several hundred people and many unique animal species, the Highlands are part of an outstanding area of biodiversity but were badly neglected until recently.

Deforestation and other unsustainable exploitation led to a 50% decrease in the region’s tree count in just half a century, and this has introduced other problems such as soil erosion and a scarcity of food sources for the local population.

In 2017, the project allowed many community members to be taught about different planting techniques, conservation and tree species. More than 13,000 tree seedlings were planted, in addition to the 20,000 that were planted in the previous year, and forest rangers were given fire prevention training and equipment. Now, sensitive issues such as gender are also starting to be discussed, as a result of the project.

These achievements have gone some way to providing nutrition and income for the Dom community and, since residents have been trained in fire prevention there have been no reported fires.

The partnership between the ITF and COMAID is going from strength to strength, and will continue to offer support and guidance for the Bamenda residents. For this upcoming year, one of the focuses is to empower the community’s women by improving their farming techniques and reduce inequality.

We look forward to seeing the fantastic work achieved by this project in the coming year!

If you would like to learn more about our long-term sustainability commitments, read our environmental policy page.