Following last week’s COVID-19 update from ILFORD Photo and their tongue-in-cheek suggestion that, “If you are tempted to stockpile rolls, we recommend ones that go into a camera“, I’m sad to report that the company has announced its intent to temporarily cease production at their Mobberly (UK) factory from Wednesday April 1st 2020 until further notice.
The UK government has not provided specific restrictions on the UK manufacturing sector at this time, however ILFORD state that:
“…with the country in lockdown we feel now is the time to act in order to protect our employees and our National Health Service (NHS) by minimising the spread of the virus.”
In terms of how this temporary closure affects you and me as customers of ILFORD film, the ILFORD warehouse will remain open in order to fulfil commitments to online customers in the UK and US, online retailers and distributors. In addition, ILFORD confirms in their statement that in anticipation of a pause in manufacturing, production of the company’s most popular lines has been temporarily increased and other essential staff have already been shifted to working from home. again in full:
- The ILFORD warehouse will remain open in order to fulfil commitments to online customers in the UK and US, online retailers and distributors.
- In anticipation of a pause in manufacturing, production of the company’s most popular lines was increased.
- Other essential staff already working from home.
Concerning the status of the warehouse, ILFORD asks customers to, “Please be assured that social distancing measures are being adhered to and personal protective equipment is in use.”
What does this mean for ILFORD? The company has been in operation in one form or another for 140 years and is synonymous with black and white film stocks like HP5 PLUS and FP4 PLUS. ILFORD note that their staff have been furloughed under a new job protection scheme launched by the UK government and the purpose of the current measures being to “safeguard the long-term future of our business and our most valuable assets, our employees.”
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