Quickest is 2 weeks for something rough and ready for beer, but the longer you leave it (months) the better the taste and flavour. The lager in the photo was just 10 days old and quite cloudy but still very drinkable on the sunny day it was.
Brewers Coop have many different brands/types, even DB and loads of European variations - here's just one list
, including stout, cider, pilsener, etc. Join their loyalty programme and eventually you'll have enough points for discounts, free stuff.
Have a squiz through Youtube, there's quite a few how to videos. It really is very simple, provided you follow the instructions.
+1 on the plastic bottles to begin with too.
The kit you'll get from Brewers Coop includes hydrometer, external thermometer (you'll need to keep the carboy at a good constant temperature with little variation, we wrapped ours up in a blanket and put it on a polystyrene block) and watch out for the yeasty smell while it's fermenting. I wouldn't recommend keeping it in your bedroom unless you plan to stay single
Considering how much people drink mass produced beer & wine, the advantage of home brew is the variation in batch, which happens because the temperature varies, or the type of water you use, or if you add too much/little carbonation drops and stuff like that - so ignore the kind words from somedude and give it a try
It's home brew, not brain surgery so you don't need to be precise to the point of crying yourself to sleep because the temperature got to 18.5c