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Wickes hits back at boycott campaign over COO’s comments that trans-critical shoppers ‘are not welcome’ in stores

Wickes storefront

Wickes has come under fire by shoppers resulting in a boycott campaign and tumbling share price after its chief operating officer, Fraser Longden, said shoppers with trans-critical views are “bigots” who “are not welcome in our stores”.

Longden, who spoke at an online trans summit hosted by Pink News yesterday, said: “I don’t think I’m ever going to change some of the bigots out there’s minds, I’m never going to win that argument with them”.

However, his comments resulted in an online boycott, as well as a drop in its share price, which is currently down 4.25% today.

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Wickes is ranked as a Top50 retailer in the RXUK Top500 research.

Responding to the threats of a boycott, he said: “The other 10% are just hot air and they will go and buy a tin of paint in the nearest place to them.

“That might have been us before, it might not be us afterwards – and equally, if they do come in and buy a tin of paint and behave that way, they’re not welcome in our stores anyway.”

One Twitter user said: “So Wickes thinks anyone in the UK that thinks biological females deserve fair and safe sport is a bigot! That’s an lawful lot of mums, dads, grandparents, brothers and of course females who’ll be taking their bigoted business elsewhere.”

Another user added questioned if the board at Wickes’ see the majority of their customers as “bigots”?

However, a Wickes spokesperson told InternetRetailing: “At Wickes, we are proud to be an inclusive home improvement employer and support the LGBTQ+ community in its entirety. 

“We are committed to building a workplace and culture where all colleagues can feel at home.”

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