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Reviews Written by
Mr. C. J. Howard "Chris" (South Wales)
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Unique 2.74m (9') Concertina Loft Ladder - Superb compact design
Unique 2.74m (9') Concertina Loft Ladder - Superb compact design
Offered by BPS Access Solutions
Price: £249.99

28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good Loft Ladder but no pole and other issues., 29 Jan. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I wont go too much into detail regarding the fixtures and fittings because you can read about this from previous reviews. I received this product within 3 days of ordering it and was quite shocked on how light the ladders were (a great bonus).

As stated in previous reviews, the fitting instructions are not brilliant but you dont need a degree in engineering to work out how to fit the loft ladders, however I will state five very important points that have not been mentioned in previous reviews that are reasonably significant and would have swayed my choice when buying the loft ladders.

(1) The loft ladders are fitted to the side of the loft opening (just over the hinges that connect the door hatch to that attic opening), this requires a very wide edge to the attic opening on the one side which in my opinion most attics do not have (look at the pictures carefully on Amazon). I had to build up this edge up with extra wood and very long screws to make it secure.

(2) The loft ladders need 2 people to fit, unless you are a very competent handy man or carpenter. One person needs to hold the loft ladder over the attic opening whilst the other screws it in just over the attic door hinges, I would not recommend doing this on your own as it could be a complete and utter nightmare.

(3) The loft ladder does not come with a pole to pull the ladders down? The loft ladders are not the cheapest in the world, so I was really annoyed there was no pole supplied, (other cheaper loft ladders come with a pole and hook). All that is supplied in the loft ladder assembly kit is a cheap plastic hook but you still have to buy a wooden pole to put the hook on the end and screw in. I would not recommmend doing this as the plastic hook snapped on the second time I used it as its that cheap and flimsy. In the end I had to buy a brass hook and pole which cost me over twenty pounds extra and should have been supplied with the loft ladder in the first place.

(4) The loft ladder boasts it can hold up to 26 stone of weight but I would not like to test this theory out. The loft ladders were fitted correctly and operates pefectly, but as I walk up the ladders it feels flimsy and I am 14 stone (its just not as sturdy as I thought it would be). I would not like to carry too much weight up these loft ladders and I would not recommend anyone over 18 to 20 stone walking up them (but that is just my opinion).

(5) The loft ladders do not have any form of handle when you are going up them, it is literally the same experience as climbing up a set of ladders. This could prove testing for people who are nervous with heights or are not confident or able bodied enough to climb stairs/ladders efficiently. I have no problem with this but my wife was disappointed there were no handles or aid to climb the loft ladders and she does struggle slightly (and she is as fit as a flea).

I do want to add to this review that once the ladders are fitted they do a job, work efficiently and are probably the best space saving ladders in the market place (the pull down mechanism is great), but because of the five issues above I will only give this product 3 stars as its dampened my whole experience with the price compared to other loft ladders.

I think if you want a really firm set of loft ladders that offer more, I would opt for the wooden set that cost about the same as these ladders (my parents have these and they are certainly more stable and in my opinion can handle more weight), plus you have the added bonus that they come with handles to aid climbing and a pull down pole and hook, but I appreciate they do take up a lot more space in the actual attic.

Hope this review helps.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 2, 2015 1:39 PM BST


Catit Urban Design Patterned Scratching Board with Catnip, Bench
Catit Urban Design Patterned Scratching Board with Catnip, Bench
Offered by Cocos Petshop
Price: £19.19

2.0 out of 5 stars 'Cat'astophic for my carpet, 24 Jan. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Let me start by saying these bed/cat scratching boards are very cheap so from a price point of view its worth having a punt to see if you and your cat will like them (that is why I have given the review 2 stars as not every cat is the same and some felines will probably enjoy them), however in my opinion the scratching boards do not last very long at all and dont really work.

The Catit Scratching Board is basically made of cardboard and the patterned design on the sides is glossy paper stuck on with paper glue, the cardboard scratching part of the board is made up of tiny holes and so you can see through the board if you hold it up to the light.

My issues were as follows:

I ordered 3 Catit Scratching Boards as I have 2 cats and I had just moved into a new bigger house (every room carpeted), the cats were constantly scratching the carpet in all the rooms. I unpacked the 3 scratching boards and immediately the patterened design print came off the side on one scratching board and wouldnt stick back on, so it immediatley looked rubbish. (Later on in the week the design print came off another scratching board on one side also, it made the boards look unique to say the least).

Ignoring this I then sprinkled the supplied cat nip on the boards as instructed and waited with baited breath to see what would happen (I was sadly even excited). What happened was hilarious, the cats came in and smelt the cat nip, however the cat nip had just gone straight through the scratching board as its full of tiny holes (see description above), and so the catnip was all over the carpet underneath the board. The cats smelt around the scratching board and then simultaneously barged the scratching board out of the way and went mad with the carpet full of cat nip actually escalating the problem, the particular area of the carpet was almost ripped to shreds as it was caked in catnip.

I quickly hoovered up the cat nip and left the boards to see if the cats would scratch the boards instead of the carpet, after a week of usage the cats had no interest in the scratching boards what so ever. If you had the choice between a comfty couch, bed or springy carpet, would you sleep and waste your time chilling on an uncomfortable cardboard lump? there lies the problem. Within 2 weeks of buying the three scratching boards I had taken all three down the tip and bought some very cheap rugs instead which seem to the do the job better (I just remove the rugs if we have guests around).

I appreciate from previous reviewers that some cats love these things but in my opinion my cats just werent interested in them. The ironic ending to this story was that one of the cats was actually sick on one of the scratching boards, he started to make the funny sick noise as cats do and then walked over to the scratching board and vomited all over it (I think that speaks volumes enough dont you!).


Catit Animal Design Patterned Scratching Board with Catnip, S-Shaped
Catit Animal Design Patterned Scratching Board with Catnip, S-Shaped
Price: £6.99

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A complete and utter 'cat'astophe !!!, 24 Jan. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Let me start by saying these bed/cat scratching boards are very cheap so from a price point of view its worth having a punt to see if you and your cat will like them (that is why I have given the review 2 stars as not every cat is the same and some felines will probably enjoy them), however in my opinion the scratching boards do not last very long at all and dont really work.

The Catit Scratching Board is basically made of cardboard and the patterned design on the sides is glossy paper stuck on with paper glue, the cardboard scratching part of the board is made up of tiny holes and so you can see through the board if you hold it up to the light.

My issues were as follows:

I ordered 3 Catit Scratching Boards as I have 2 cats and I had just moved into a new bigger house (every room carpeted), the cats were constantly scratching the carpet in all the rooms. I unpacked the 3 scratching boards and immediately the patterened design print came off the side on one scratching board and wouldnt stick back on, so it immediatley looked rubbish. (Later on in the week the design print came off another scratching board on one side also, it made the boards look unique to say the least).

Ignoring this I then sprinkled the supplied cat nip on the boards as instructed and waited with baited breath to see what would happen (I was sadly even excited). What happened was hilarious, the cats came in and smelt the cat nip, however the cat nip had just gone straight through the scratching board as its full of tiny holes (see description above), and so the catnip was all over the carpet underneath the board. The cats smelt around the scratching board and then simultaneously barged the scratching board out of the way and went mad with the carpet full of cat nip actually escalating the problem, the particular area of the carpet was almost ripped to shreds as it was caked in catnip.

I quickly hoovered up the cat nip and left the boards to see if the cats would scratch the boards instead of the carpet, after a week of usage the cats had no interest in the scratching boards what so ever. If you had the choice between a comfty couch, bed or springy carpet, would you sleep and waste your time chilling on an uncomfortable cardboard lump? there lies the problem. Within 2 weeks of buying the three scratching boards I had taken all three down the tip and bought some very cheap rugs instead which seem to the do the job better (I just remove the rugs if we have guests around).

I appreciate from previous reviewers that some cats love these things but in my opinion my cats just werent interested in them. The ironic ending to this story was that one of the cats was actually sick on one of the scratching boards, he started to make the funny sick noise as cats do and then walked over to the scratching board and vomited all over it (I think that speaks volumes enough dont you!).


Catit Tiger Design Patterned Scratching Board with Catnip, Lounge
Catit Tiger Design Patterned Scratching Board with Catnip, Lounge
Price: £4.99

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars 'Cat'astrophic !!!, 24 Jan. 2013
Let me start by saying these bed/cat scratching boards are very cheap so from a price point of view its worth having a punt to see if you and your cat will like them (that is why I have given the review 2 stars as not every cat is the same and some felines will probably enjoy them), however in my opinion the scratching boards do not last very long at all and dont really work.

The Catit Scratching Board is basically made of cardboard and the patterned design on the sides is glossy paper stuck on with paper glue, the cardboard scratching part of the board is made up of tiny holes and so you can see through the board if you hold it up to the light.

My issues were as follows:

I ordered 3 Catit Scratching Boards as I have 2 cats and I had just moved into a new bigger house (every room carpeted), the cats were constantly scratching the carpet in all the rooms. I unpacked the 3 scratching boards and immediately the patterened design print came off the side on one scratching board and wouldnt stick back on, so it immediatley looked rubbish. (Later on in the week the design print came off another scratching board on one side also, it made the boards look unique to say the least).

Ignoring this I then sprinkled the supplied cat nip on the boards as instructed and waited with baited breath to see what would happen (I was sadly even excited). What happened was hilarious, the cats came in and smelt the cat nip, however the cat nip had just gone straight through the scratching board as its full of tiny holes (see description above), and so the catnip was all over the carpet underneath the board. The cats smelt around the scratching board and then simultaneously barged the scratching board out of the way and went mad with the carpet full of cat nip actually escalating the problem, the particular area of the carpet was almost ripped to shreds as it was caked in catnip.

I quickly hoovered up the cat nip and left the boards to see if the cats would scratch the boards instead of the carpet, after a week of usage the cats had no interest in the scratching boards what so ever. If you had the choice between a comfty couch, bed or springy carpet, would you sleep and waste your time chilling on an uncomfortable cardboard lump? there lies the problem. Within 2 weeks of buying the three scratching boards I had taken all three down the tip and bought some very cheap rugs instead which seem to the do the job better (I just remove the rugs if we have guests around).

I appreciate from previous reviewers that some cats love these things but in my opinion my cats just werent interested in them. The ironic ending to this story was that one of the cats was actually sick on one of the scratching boards, he started to make the funny sick noise as cats do and then walked over to the scratching board and vomited all over it (I think that speaks volumes enough dont you!).


Catit Jungle Stripes Design Patterned Scratching Board with Catnip, Lounge
Catit Jungle Stripes Design Patterned Scratching Board with Catnip, Lounge
Price: £3.78

2.0 out of 5 stars An absolute 'cat'astrophe !!!!, 24 Jan. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Let me start by saying these bed/cat scratching boards are very cheap so from a price point of view its worth having a punt to see if you and your cat will like them (that is why I have given the review 2 stars as not every cat is the same and some felines will probably enjoy them), however in my opinion the scratching boards do not last very long at all and dont really work.

The Catit Scratching Board is basically made of cardboard and the patterned design on the sides is glossy paper stuck on with paper glue, the cardboard scratching part of the board is made up of tiny holes and so you can see through the board if you hold it up to the light.

My issues were as follows:

I ordered 3 Catit Scratching Boards as I have 2 cats and I had just moved into a new bigger house (every room carpeted), the cats were constantly scratching the carpet in all the rooms. I unpacked the 3 scratching boards and immediately the patterened design print came off the side on one scratching board and wouldnt stick back on, so it immediatley looked rubbish. (Later on in the week the design print came off another scratching board on one side also, it made the boards look unique to say the least).

Ignoring this I then sprinkled the supplied cat nip on the boards as instructed and waited with baited breath to see what would happen (I was sadly even excited). What happened was hilarious, the cats came in and smelt the cat nip, however the cat nip had just gone straight through the scratching board as its full of tiny holes (see description above), and so the catnip was all over the carpet underneath the board. The cats smelt around the scratching board and then simultaneously barged the scratching board out of the way and went mad with the carpet full of cat nip actually escalating the problem, the particular area of the carpet was almost ripped to shreds as it was caked in catnip.

I quickly hoovered up the cat nip and left the boards to see if the cats would scratch the boards instead of the carpet, after a week of usage the cats had no interest in the scratching boards what so ever. If you had the choice between a comfty couch, bed or springy carpet, would you sleep and waste your time chilling on an uncomfortable cardboard lump? there lies the problem. Within 2 weeks of buying the three scratching boards I had taken all three down the tip and bought some very cheap rugs instead which seem to the do the job better (I just remove the rugs if we have guests around).

I appreciate from previous reviewers that some cats love these things but in my opinion my cats just werent interested in them. The ironic ending to this story was that one of the cats was actually sick on one of the scratching boards, he started to make the funny sick noise as cats do and then walked over to the scratching board and vomited all over it (I think that speaks volumes enough dont you!).


No Title Available

45 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great set of tables for the price, 24 Jan. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I want to keep this review as brief as possible as there is only so much you can write about a nest of 3 tables so here goes:

The build quality is great and the tables look much more expensive that they actually are, the nest of 3 tables are delivered flat packed but come with an alan key and easy to follow instructions (it literally took me 5 minutes to put them together).

The quality of the wood is very good and it feels very sturdy whilst looking great, it wont chip or scratch easily which is an added bonus.

I conclude by saying you wont get anything better for the money you will pay for these 3 nest of tables (perhaps in IKEA), but these tables from Amazon do not look cheap and will last for many years.


Seac Mate Swim Swimming Bag - Black
Seac Mate Swim Swimming Bag - Black

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Swimming and Gym Bag, 24 Jan. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is the second 'swim-in' SEAC bag I have owned and I love it.

I just cant find anything to match it and believe me I have bought quite a few swimming/gym bags, this bag ticks all the boxes for me. The size of the bag is perfect and not too big or small. I generally take 3 lots of swim trunks, a large towel, 2 gym kits and 2 pairs of trainers in this SEAC bag and there is room for a bit more, (plus it has two pockets either end that can fit all my toiletries, swimming goggles, water bottles, banana and other extras in).

The look of the bag also does it for me and not being a popular make (e.g. Nike, Adidas, Speedo), is a bonus as people often ask about it.

This bag wont be to everyones taste but hey ho thats life, but I am personally very happy with it. My only grumble is the build quality isnt amazing but this really is minor as my last 'swim-n' SEAC bag lasted about 16 months of heavy usage and my second is still going strong.

I always like to know the correct sizes of bags and so when it is almost full the size of the bag is as follows:

Length: 500mm (50cms) / Width: 380mm (38cms) / Depth or Height: 350mm (35cms).


Homeland: The Legend of Drizzt, Book I
Homeland: The Legend of Drizzt, Book I
Price: £5.27

5.0 out of 5 stars A Hidden Treasure, 24 Jan. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I like to think I have read a great many books in the fantasy genre and I obviously have my favourite writers (Feist / Gemmell / Tolkien), but how has this author slipped under my radar for so long?

Quite frankly 'Homeland: The Legend of Drizzt (Book 1)' has to be one of the best fantasy books I have read in a very long time, it was absolutely fantastic and I can honestly say it has renewed my love of fantasy as a lot of the books in this genre have become stale and tired of late.

The 'Homeland' novel has everything you could ever want from a fantasy classic: murder, deceit, action, adventure, plot twists, great characters and a good story. Quite frankly in my opinion this book is brilliant and a ripping good yarn.

I am just absolutely gutted I have not discovered R.A.Salvatore's work in the past as this book to me was a revelation. I just cant understand why R.A.Salvatore hasnt been given better aclaim in the fantasy genre (perhaps its because he writes under the banner: "Forgotten Realms" ?).

If you love 'old school' fantasy novels I promise you, you will love this book. I finished the first novel in this series within 3 mights as I was that hooked, and cant wait to start the second book.

I am not going to go into detail regarding the storyline of 'Homeland' as that has been overdone on previous reviews, plus you can read the sypnosis on the back of the book or under description (on Amazon). Just trust me this novel is a classic and hopefully you will love it as much as I did.

R.A.Salvatore has a new fan.


Demon Gates (Nexus Wars Saga Book 1)
Demon Gates (Nexus Wars Saga Book 1)
Price: £0.00

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Poor First Book (regardless of price), 15 Jan. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I hate it when people leave reviews stating "I gave this book 5 stars as it was so cheap and for the money I paid not a bad read", what a pointless and pathetic review. It doesnt matter about the price of a novel, if a book is a good read then the book is a good read and likewise if its garbage regardless of its cost. I read this first novel on the back of some of these pointless reviews (something I will never do again), and I have to say was extremely disappointed.

I appreciate the novelist is new to the fantasy genre and I also take into account this is his first book in a supposedly long series (hence the three stars instead of the two I was going to leave), so each novel will hopefully get better as the author matures with his writing, but I found the first book lacking on several levels.

The story wasnt too bad but lets be honest the blue print has been used a hundred times in the fantasy genre (demons, buxom wenches, sterotypical rich annoying bad guy and young stable boy coming of age etc...), but even ignoring this there was something just lacking from the novel. The main character was in my opinion dull as dishwater and I didnt care less about him throughout the entire story and the beginning of the book just dragged on far too long with the same storyline regurgitated again and again in a slightly different order (main character has to fight the same odd troll like creatures who seem to chase him for a millennium). The middle part of the book for me was the best part with some interesting new characters and good surprises but then it all fell apart as the ending was just far too predictable and a perfect way to start the second book in the series (quelle surpise).

Perhaps I am being a bit harsh here as there were aspects of the book I did enjoy, (especially the dark religous sacrifice scene), but the rest of the novel has just all been done before and there was nothing in this book that set my fantasy taste buds alight. I will not be reading any further books in this series as a result.

I wanted to love this book as this was a new fantasy writer and the novel was like other reviewers have stated 'extremely good value for money' but it just didnt float my boat regardless of how cheap it was, I just didnt really enjoy it and apologise to anyone who found it fascinating.
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 26, 2013 9:27 AM GMT


The Book of Three (Chronicles of Prydain)
The Book of Three (Chronicles of Prydain)
by Lloyd Alexander
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A pleasant surprise but wont set the fantasy world alight, 15 Jan. 2013
I got given these books by a friend who had never read them and being a fantasy fan I thought "Why Not". I can honestly say I had never heard of this series of fantasy books, so I took the plunge.

I have to say I was pleasantly surprised by the novels. Lets get something straight, they will never set the fantasy world alight and the similarity between these books and a certain 'J R Tolkiens' wonderful masterpieces sometimes verged on plagiarism (one of the characters is a complete ringer for Smeagle), but I did enjoy the read

I got the perception whilst reading the novels that they were perhaps written for children as they were fast paced and very brief without any real depth and the characters were written with a hint of comedy (the main characters job is 'pig assistant').

My only gripe was the ending of the first novel involving 'The Horned King', talk about anti climax.

However I do recommend these novels as they are a refreshing read especially compared to the modern 'in depth' 'heavy going' fantasy books that have been published of late. These books are easy reading and can be read in a few weeks and the storys and characters alike are extremely enjoyable.


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