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Bachmann Europe to bring Thomas to the UK & Ireland

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Bachmann Europe Plc Licensed for Fun with New Thomas & Friends™ Range

 

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On 17th April 2019, Bachmann Industries, Inc. announced that Bachmann Trains USA and Bachmann Europe Plc have expanded their licensing agreement with Mattel through which Bachmann has been granted rights to distribute OO/HO scale Thomas & Friends™ products in the United Kingdom and Ireland.

 

Bachmann Europe will be launching a range of OO gauge Thomas & Friends™ models in 2020 and work is currently underway to ensure that the models selected for the initial launch conform to European standards for toy safety. The models will be packaged for the UK market and once produced, will be available through Bachmann Europe stockists.

 

The initial range will include train sets, locomotives, rolling stock and accessories and will be formally announced at the London and Nuremberg Toy Fairs in 2020 – we look forward to presenting these exciting new products to our customers at these events.

 

About Thomas & Friends™

Thomas the Tank Engine™ was created over 70 years ago by a British clergyman, the Rev W Awdry, as a storybook for his son. That story quickly grew to become the award-winning global brand franchise it is today, enjoyed by families in more than 150 territories and in over 40 languages across multiple touch-points and formats, including: 400+ original TV shows; 12 feature-length films; 14 websites in nine languages; apps; toys (ranked number one property in the pre-school toys category in the UK and Australia and number two in the US); consumer products; publishing; live attractions and much more. Thomas & Friends has scooped prestigious accolades including a Parent’s Choice Award, a Webby and a Licensing Award for Best Classic Licensed Property. The famous and cheeky No.1 blue engine and his friends invite children to enter a world of imagination through the tracks of a train. Together, the children and engines embark on timeless adventures while experiencing valuable yet fun life lessons of discovery, friendship and cooperation. Thomas & Friends™ is viewable on more than 30 world-class broadcasters including PBS KIDS® in the US, Super RTL in Germany, and on Five’s Milkshake! and Nick Jr. in the UK. Downloadable episodes are available through iTunes, Amazon and Google Play.

 

For more information about the wonderful world of Thomas & Friends please visit: www.thomasandfriends.com, www.facebook.com/thomasandfriends and for bonus material and exclusive content www.youtube.com/user/thomasandfriends.

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Egads - Thomas in metallic electric blue - My dad had a Ford Cortina in that colour in the early seventies.

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Spoiler Alert - He's lamped up for pulling freight wagons... are Annie and Clarabel to be axed?   

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1 hour ago, woodenhead said:

Thomas in metallic electric blue

 

I thought I'd grab a pic of Celebration Thomas from the US site...

 

Quote

In honor of the 70th birthday of Thomas the Tank Engine™, we offer this “Celebration Thomas” with colorful banners and a special edition metallic paint finish. Thomas is dressed and ready for his party!

 

In the finest social media tradition I should have then asked who else was dressing up for the party. :)

 

thomas-the-vape-engine-atC2O4p.gif

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28 minutes ago, Chamby said:

Spoiler Alert - He's lamped up for pulling freight wagons... are Annie and Clarabel to be axed?   

He'd need a lamp mount that would make him look like a Unicorn - perhaps they're indicating they'll be rare? !!

 

Al.

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The lamp placement is what was used during the TV series. In the early days they were using small incandescent globes, which must have proved a headache when they eventually burned out in the middle of filming. And yes, I am aware that the Reverend Awdry himself got a letter from a boy indicating that in one illustration, James was carrying the incorrect lamp code.

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Excellent news that Thomas is not to leave the UK Model market - wonder how much effort will be made to making models or will they just use the existing US models? Shame there is no mention of the N Gauge models they have announced coming as well, but I presume these will also come as it makes commercial sense

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Are Skarloey, Rheneas and co to be included in this range? Or a Non face fitted UK version would be nice!!!

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I'm wondering if the N scale stuff is going to be re-branded Tomix

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I see no mention of N scale, only OO/HO.

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This is fantastic news - I'd been hoping they'd do this. Obviously the 009 stuff will be a huge seller, and (puts tinfoil hat on) I have a theory that the reason they're producing the comparatively unpopular character Rusty is because they know it's a prototype that will appeal to non-Thomas modellers. However, I think Henrietta and the Red Coaches will have a lot of appeal for light railway and pre-grouping modellers as well. I can also see Percy selling well by reason of that rather neat 0-4-0 chassis.

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Makes sense . Bachmann have had a Thomas range for years, now extended to the former Hornby territory of UK and Ireland .  Always thought the Bachmann models captured the charm better than Hornby, that to me were always modified A3, Black5, D49 and 3F. Might get the Bachmann name more well known amongst the general public starting little Johnny with his TTTE set, presumably it will have Bachmann branding  which might lead them to investigate the Bachmann range . Its interesting in that Bachmann TTTE costs much less than Hornby , despite having to pay Licensing costs and yet its still worthwhile to them, but not Hornby .

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23 minutes ago, Ramrig said:

Are Skarloey, Rheneas and co to be included in this range?

 

Not at the start of the range I believe; one of the important stages to go through is ensuring each product meets EU Toy Safety Directives so the range will build over time based on demand.

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Well, the US Branch, which has been behind the HO/OO gauge, LS, NG and the new N have said All ranges will be coming to the UK. The main one is of course the OO range, and the new N gauge range. Yes, they will be bringing out Skarloey and Rheneas, if they’re smart they should do it after the initial launch but by the end of next year at least

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4 hours ago, Coldgunner said:

I'm wondering if the N scale stuff is going to be re-branded Tomix

 

That is an interesting point. There are a number of cases where the licencing rules  preclude Tomix sales outside of Japan. I believe the 'Hello Kitty' 500 series Shinkansen was one (not that such abortions should exist in any event!). Perhaps the Tomix Thomas range will fall under that category.

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It has been considered since announced a few months ago that the new range could be rebranded Tomix ones, though it seems that this is less likely given things Bachmann have said in regard to the range since announcement. 

In other regards to the thread topic, Bachmann UK have revealed that they’ll have new packaging for the models, presumably to do away with the HO on the packaging, and perhaps to give it a proper box? And in contrast to the original announcement made by Bachmann US, they will be selling the range on their own site, as opposed to the normal US site. Of course, they’ll be carried by retailers, Hattons is almost certainly a given and a Rails of Sheffield’s recent post has basically said they’ll be stocking it.

While this won’t really affect me directly, already in the US, hopefully this will lead to A) lower prices in general, they’ve reached ridiculous heights, though this is mainly directed at the ones listed for buying direct from Bachmann and B) lower prices for the NG stock, which I think is what the vast majority of people here actually, and fairly so, care about. I just hope they’ll actually get a regular supply of parts for engines that have parts out of stock, not listed, or where the engine as a whole isn’t listed(Rheneas comes immediately to mind).

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After all the effort I went to years ago with the "Not Thomas" junior 0-6-0:

 

2086744811_HornbyAyers1.JPG.5b0d1e20f7bbf0bcbdfd24d9860d64a8.JPG

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2 hours ago, SomethingTrainLover said:

It has been considered since announced a few months ago that the new range could be rebranded Tomix ones, though it seems that this is less likely given things Bachmann have said in regard to the range since announcement. 

In other regards to the thread topic, Bachmann UK have revealed that they’ll have new packaging for the models, presumably to do away with the HO on the packaging, and perhaps to give it a proper box? And in contrast to the original announcement made by Bachmann US, they will be selling the range on their own site, as opposed to the normal US site. Of course, they’ll be carried by retailers, Hattons is almost certainly a given and a Rails of Sheffield’s recent post has basically said they’ll be stocking it.

While this won’t really affect me directly, already in the US, hopefully this will lead to A) lower prices in general, they’ve reached ridiculous heights, though this is mainly directed at the ones listed for buying direct from Bachmann and B) lower prices for the NG stock, which I think is what the vast majority of people here actually, and fairly so, care about. I just hope they’ll actually get a regular supply of parts for engines that have parts out of stock, not listed, or where the engine as a whole isn’t listed(Rheneas comes immediately to mind).

 

 I doubt Hattons will be stocking , unless they patch up their differences with Bachmann. 

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This was really an inevitability after Hornby announced they were pulling theirs. Bachman’s Hogwarts range didn’t do so well from what I can recall, and Hornby's just keeps coming back stronger, especially since they now have the correct loco. Hornby's Thomas range was always a little bit of a sore point for me. When I was younger I wanted the locos that looked like the TV series and Hornby just never gave us that. Bachmann's are designed directly from the tv series so fit the bill perfectly! 

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This is good news indeed, I wonder which bits will be found most useful?  The 4-wheel red carriages have definite potential, the 6-wheelers perhaps less so but the chassis would open up possibilities.  The loco chassis could be quite useful- the James model for instance might open up a way toward small-wheeled 4-6-0s (I'm thinking GCR Glenalmonds and LNER B9s here) and then of course there's the OO9 range...

 

Roll on 2020!

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So much excitement about a kiddies toy!

 

I'm confused.

What does this have to do with the model railway hobby?

 

 

Ron

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24 minutes ago, Ron Ron Ron said:

So much excitement about a kiddies toy!

 

I'm confused.

What does this have to do with the model railway hobby?

 

 

Absolutely everything. Here are some points:

  • I'm sure my lifelong obsession with railways is rooted in early exposure to the original Thomas the Tank Engine books, of which I had the first four. I suspect that James the Red Engine has had a subliminal influence on my preference for the Midland Railway!
  • I'm fairly sure that most of us would like to imagine that our hobby will outlive us - the Thomas merchandising is, one hopes, drawing children into the hobby. My exposure to model railways began with 47606, a handful of wagons, and a circle of track on the dining room floor - if that wasn't a toy, what was?
  • As mentioned above, some of the items in the range (or components thereof) have the potential to be made use of in "serious" modelling projects - those 4-wheel carriages, with their close resemblance to Brighton stock, are a case in point. (Urgently needed - a tabulation of wheelbases and driving wheel diameters of the locos in the range.)
  • It's an antidote to taking ourselves too seriously. But, folks, please do remember that when modelling the railways of Sodor, its as important as with any other modelling project to refer to pictures of the prototype!

I'm sure others can contribute more. 

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We already stock the Bachmann Thomas range as we import it from the USA. Bachmann Europe getting the license will now make it easier for us as we will no longer have to pay import duties, custom charges, air freight as Bachmann Europe will pay all this. We found the Bachmann range sold better than the Hornby range, so a great move by Bachmann Europe. 

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5 hours ago, Ron Ron Ron said:

So much excitement about a kiddies toy!

 

I'm confused.

What does this have to do with the model railway hobby?

 

 

Ron

 

 

I'm assuming you're trolling, but here goes:

 

"Such excitement" - less than a page after 24 hours. Considering the number of posts you've made, you must have seen a proper exciting thread by now. Anything less than 5 pages of comments in a day doesn't constitute excitement. 

 

"What does this have to do with the model railway hobby?" - Well, they ARE model railway items. Wheels, flanges, motors and everything. If you don't think they are model railway, what are they? 

 

I fancy getting hold of a Bill or Ben to de-Thomas it. The 009 range will be useful too. Narrow Planet does a nice kit for Dolgoch for a start.

 

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All I can say about the Bachmann "Thomas" himself is that the front buffer height would have been considered awkward even by Triang, and it doesn't have a front coupling to enable it to run tender first as a Tank loco should!

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