17 April 2020
Its factories have re-started in China, though some delays to products are to be expected, explains Bachmann Europe's Communications Manager, Richard Proudman.
In an update to members of the model press, Bachmann Europe Plc has explained how it is adapting to changes arising from the Covid-19 outbreak. Its factories are returning to production and its next shipment will include its Branchline Class 117 and 121 DMUs in OO gauge and Thompson coaches for its Graham Farish N gauge range.
Bachmann Europe's Richard Proudman explains "Due to the nationwide lockdown, no Bachmann shipments have left China since January and we are therefore looking forward to this shipment arriving hopefully in early June. Whether the authorities allow us to carry on a basic function in the UK between now and June remains to be seen. With the enforced lockdown in China, factory closures extended by many weeks after their New Year. It seems reasonable to assume a delay of around 90 days that will be extremely difficult to regain – this will unfortunately mean our products arrive later than we had planned but the health and safety of our colleagues and the wider community will always be the number one priority."
Bachmann Europe has said it is following official guidelines and in doing so continues to offer a service that supports its retailers, consumers and Collectors Club members. It has said that the majority of its employees are working from home – its Collectors Club and Consumer Services channels remain open and its Service Department is operational – albeit with reduced opening hours and only currently handling consumer enquiries for spare parts. For the small number of personnel in Barwell; social distancing, enhanced cleanliness regimes and new practices have been in place for many weeks.
At the start of February, Bachmann launched its first British Railway Announcements supplement with the Spring 2020 Bachmann Times magazine. This heralded a new approach in the way that Bachmann Europe announces new products. Of the 56 items featured in the Spring supplement, 45 have already been delivered to its retailers.
Despite the disruption, the Summer edition of British Railway Announcements has been completed and this will be published with the Summer 2020 Bachmann Times magazine at the start of May. Bachmann has said that "Covid-19 has been a major influence on the contents of this supplement, but all of the items that will feature are currently on course for delivery by the end of July. Our team here in the UK and our colleagues in China are still working hard on new products to bring to you in the coming months and years. Pocketbond products – our extensive and diverse range of plastic construction kits, diecast collectables and pocket money toys from numerous manufacturers including Academy, Roden and Trumpeter – remain in high demand and shipments to us from the various manufacturers in the Far East are also beginning to resume. With such a broad range of products available through our retailers and extensive support available to our consumers and Collectors Club members, Bachmann Europe are here and ready to help during these extraordinary times. We wish all of our customers, consumers and club members well, we ask you to stay safe, and we look forward to the time when we can all meet again whether that be at a trade event, a model railway show or during one of the events we host for members of the Bachmann Collectors Club."