HALF PRICE SALE
LONDON
19/11/05

The plan was beautifully simple! Print up a bundle of t-shirts for our secret agents, we then wander into large chainstores in central London and help the staff tidy up, give out directions and generally be helpful members of the public.

 


Agents Treat, Zargof, Greenman, Cupcake, Lucy, Immo,
Hardcastle, Totty, Jewk, Arthur and Bristly Pioneer
Meeting up just off from Oxford street on a Saturday afternoon, our gang of budding sales staff sllipped into our new t-shirts and headed off to join the throngs of a busy shopping day in London's retail mecca.

We wanted to warm up first trying out our technique on some of the smaller establisments. Picking out Puma and Diesel as two perfect candidates for a Space Hijacking, our agents took off our winter coats and headed instore. We had a plan where one agent would guard coats and bags each time whilst the others were busy hijacking.

Puma was our first hit, with our agents lasting a full 5 mins before being asked to leave by the manager. During our time we tidied rails, folded clothes and greeted customers at the entrance to the shop. In Diesel we had a different reaction, where the staff were totally bemused by our help and the security guard seemed to think we were there officially.

Feeling a bit more confident we decided to up the stakes a bit and try one of our old enemies GAP KIDS. Unsurprisingly secutiry here was much tighter with our agents lasting less than 2 mins before being asked to leave. Agent Cupcake was by this point beginning to stand out as a fantastic shop assistant, lasting longer in any of the stores than the rest of our agents.

Whilst deciding on our next move Cupcake and Greenman welcomed customers to Jaeger next door.

The next on our hitlist was Levi's flagship store on Regent Street, the staff were really amused. By this time we had learnt how to reply to customer questions about the sale without technically lying

"Is everything instore really half price"
"That's what it says on the t-shirt madam!"
"Everything?"
"That's what it says"

We stopped off for a quick tour of Hamleys on our way back up Regents Street, where Agent Greenman was quickly picked out by a Security guard.

"Hey, Stop! You can't wear that t-shirt in here!"
"Why not? It's only a t-shirt?"
"I guess, that's really cool"

Calls over manager

"Hey, look at this guy's t-shirt, it's really cool"

We were of course eventually asked to leave.

On our way to our ultimate target we walked past the designer mecca that is the Apple store. This was too good an opportunity to miss. Agents Bristly and Hardcastle slipped into the store, past security and into the window display!

Posing for the general public and showing off the new ipod our agents beconed everyone into the (now much cheaper) church of technology.

Meanwhile inside the store other agents were busy showing customers around, and parading past the queues at the tills. Eventually we were rumbled by security who strolled over to us laughing.

"I have been informed by the manager that you are all allowed to stay in the store, however you must remove your t-shirts"

As we walked off to our next target we were given a round of applause from the Apple staff.

Taking a deep breath, our agents strolled into the shop and quickly dispersed around the store to look less like a mob. Positioning ourselves at the top of escalators welcoming people, or by promotional displays.

We lasted a full five minutes before it was obvious that we were being followed by both uniformed and undercover security. Sensing that our time was running short we re-grouped and wandered the store en-mass to have a greater impact.

The security radios were by this point going haywire and we were soon escorted from the shop, only to welcome people at the front door.

 

On now to our favourite store for Hijaking, a place where profit goes before people on every decision. We are of course talking about NIKE TOWN, the spiritual home of sweatshop trainers and cultural co-option.

On our last visit to this shop for the Multinational Corporate Games we lasted a whole 30 seconds before Nike security backed up by 4 riot vans of police escorted us out. Would we last longer this time?

By this point our fingers were dropping off due to the cold November weather so we decided to head back to a warm public house to defrost. Unfortunately our half price trick didn't work at the bar!

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