Spear and Jackson Neverbend Fork Review
Now, if there’s one thing I’ve grown to love as I get older, it’s tools! I have tools that do all manner of things. I even have tools that do jobs I’ve never done and am never likely to do. I have tools that do things I don’t even understand. Show me some tools, and an impulse purchase is bound to follow. Do you understand? I love tools!
Now, as I’ve already said, my past experiences with gardening have been crap, and I hate(d) it with a passion. That aside, when I purchased a house with garden many years ago, I felt obliged to buy some basics; a shovel and fork, lawnmower, hedge clipper, that kind of stuff. When I made the purchases, I applied typical tool logic. Never buy cheap. If you want something, buy the best, and if you need something, get a good one. (The difference between wanting and needing tools is a degree of desire, which most tool fanatics will readily understand.)
When the gardening idiocy crept up on me, I therefore had some passable kit waiting in the wings, including a Spear and Jackson ‘Neverbend’ fork. It had been moved around the outhouse a few times, and it had some light use when I laid a concrete slab to put a shed on, and a little more use when I had to dig the old Victorian clay floor out from my kitchen. Otherwise, it has, as actors say, been resting.
Needless to say, despite its Neverbend designation, the first time it was used in anger for gardening purposes, it bent! The result was the following email, sent to Spear and Jackson’s customer services department.
Hello, I am contacting you regarding the Neverbend fork. I purchased one a few years ago, but haven’t ever got around to doing much with my garden. Somehow inspired this year, I decided to go about the task of preparing for a full growing season. Being a non-gardener, I read a few books, and was informed by all that the most important tool is my fork. As I read more, I found myself constantly congratulating myself, sometimes slightly smugly, that I had been smart enough to select a quality item, in the shape of my Neverbend fork.
I sought out advice from other gardeners, and whenever tools were mentioned I nodded sagely and pointed out that I was no fool; I had invested in a Neverbend fork. Some seemed bored, but I would swear on Alan Titchmarsh’s grave that a few were impressed by my selection.
Anyway, after much fannying around, the fateful day came when I had to brave the cold and turn over the soil if I was to be prepared to sow in spring (that’s gardener’s talk, apparently). I headed out, Neverbend fork in hand. The first half hour passed like a whole day; it wasn’t as simple as those television bods make it look. Still, at least the Neverbend fork was light and pointy, and did the job. I laughed at those fools that had skimped on a few pennies and bought inferior forks. I imagined them cursing their poor selection as the soil refused to yield to such weak tools.
Then it happened. My Neverbend fork bent!
Now, to give you some background, I am not a hulk of a man that bends Neverbend forks at will. I am heading into my later years (not my latter years, hopefully) with a head of grey hair and the inability to stand without making a grunting noise. I do little exercise (part of the reason for starting gardening), and at a mere 5 feet 8 and one half inches tall, I’m not what you would call a giant. My hands do not bear the rough callouses of a hard day’s physical labour, and my ethic is “slower”. To bend a Neverbend fork is, therefore, not something I had anticipated in my gardening plan.
I was on the verge of heading back to my comfortable sofa to see if I could flog my collection of gardening books on E-Bay, when I spotted a sticker on the bent Neverbend fork that stated it had a ten year guarantee. I am contacting you to ascertain whether the guarantee is for some mere trifle, such as the handle falling off, or if it indeed covers the bend part of the Neverbend designation (although I suppose a Neverbend fork should be covered for eternity with regard to bending, as never implies no time limit). If it is covered, I would appreciate some assistance in ascertaining how to go about getting an unbent Neverbend fork in exchange for my bent Neverbend fork.
Having never bent a Neverbend fork before (try saying them when you’ve been drinking), I await your advice with anticipation, as I’m having a hard enough job retaining interest in gardening as it is!
The result? I received a reply the next day asking for a full length photograph! I was sorely tempted, but instead sent them a photograph of the fork. They then replied stating that, yes indeed, it was bent, and requesting an address. A few days later, a knock on the door revealed a courier bearing a brand new fork.
Hats off to Spear and Jackson for proper customer service. They get 10 out of 10 on that score.
And my new Neverbend fork?
I bent it.
Great service, crap product; I’ll rate that actual fork at -9 out of 10, giving the Spear and Jackson Neverbend fork a total of 1 out of 10.