Monday, 1 September 2014

HATS OFF TO HATTONS

Shop visit reveals some surprises


I was recently invited to the Hattons store in Wavertree, Liverpool, for a look at the impressive pre-owned service that was launched a few years back - and which is proving incredibly successful. It's always a joy to pop back to Liverpool and, stepping from the train onto Mossley Hill station, I immediately felt at home. The station is about a mile walk to the Hattons store, with the stroll along Rose Lane and up Allerton Road taking me back down memory lane... 

I used to live around these parts, cycling this route on a daily basis. Moreover, my aunty lived nearby too, so many a childhood day was spent on Allerton High Street and Calderstones Park, while Mossley Hill station is forever remembered as a spooky location on dark winter evenings, awaiting the train home. I was always fascinated by why the overhead wires in the Liverpool area were bright green - something you don't really see elsewhere....

Anyway, it was good to catch up with the staff at Hattons - a consistently friendly and helpful bunch and, although the premises have moved a few hundred yards up the road, it still holds a special place in my heart - much of my early trainset stock was bought from here - with my Dad being a regular customer in his youth too! You can read all about my visit in Model Rail issue 201, out September 25. Needless to say, I came away from the pre-owned department with a box full of 'bargains' under my arm - I knew it would be fatal!!

One thing that I will mention in advance, however, is that Hattons are also now offering a full 3D printing and design service, with some of the printing machines visible in the shop window. There was quite a weird and wonderful array of 3D printed commissions lying around the workshop upstairs, showing that a wide variety of customers have been using the service, not just railway modellers. Hattons can also sell you a 3D printing machine for home use, with prices starting at £380ish for a simple Printrbot. See www.ehattons.com for more info.


Watch the 3D printing process at work in Hattons' shop window!

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