Have a look at Scottish hills or walk highlands for most recent trip reports. Our hills have varied conditions at all times of the year. There's still a great deal of snow around as evidenced by the recent avalanche reports. Its still winter, come prepared.
Generally I would disagree, although naturally things are cheaper, I found most shops to have a poorer selection than any decent sized tiso or cotswold store. Excepting paragon stores in new York, which is huge. Wasn't impressed with REI much at all.