Update: Brooks temporarily suspends shipment of UK made saddles to the UK due to Brexit

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British made Brooks saddles are no longer being shipped to UK customers due to Brexit uncertainty.

UPDATE: Extra, the UK distributor has been in touch to explain that Brooks products are still available through UK stockists and that UK made Brooks products are delivered from Brooks in the Midlands to Extra’s UK warehouse. More info here.

Customers attempting to purchase directly from the Brooks website though will still be unable too, see the original story below:

Brooks has manufactured saddles at its factory in the Midlands for 150 years, but Brexit uncertainty means that UK customers aren’t able to buy one of these luxury leather perches for the time being.

While Brooks is still based in the UK along with its manufacturing facilities, the Brooks company has been owned by Selle Royal since 2002 and all British made saddles are first shipped to Italy before being distributed Worldwide, including back to the UK. Many companies are still unsure how the new relationship between the UK and EU will work in terms of shipping, import duties and customs paperwork, and we have seen similar reactions for the likes of Rose, YT and Canyon.

Brooks announced on its website that they would no longer be able to accept UK orders for saddles after the 29th December. The statement suggests that this is a temporary measure, and also explains how their Returns policy will be extended to deal with “procedural delays”.

At Brooks England, we continue to produce each leather saddle in our West Midlands factory in more or less the same manner as we have for over 150 years. However, upon their completion, since some time these saddles are shipped first to our logistics centre in Italy and from there to Cyclists around the world.

Due to this, the ongoing changes in the Brexit situation have made it necessary to temporarily suspend all new orders to the UK at this time. However, orders received before 12.00 CET on 29 December will be regularly processed.

Additionally, we will be extending our return window for purchases made prior to this announcement so as to allow for easy returns despite procedural delays. For information about returns or any other questions, please contact our Customer Service department who will be happy to assist you.

We appreciate your patience while we analyse this situation and plan the proper administrative steps moving forward.

For more information and to be notified when shipping will resume, please subscribe here. By subscribing, you will only receive mails concerning this issue.

Brooks England

We’ll keep an eye on this and similar news and update you once we hear of any changes.

Forbes

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Comments (19)

    Is this approach an attempt to break the saddles in pre-purchase by having them do several thousand miles before being available to buy?

    all EU based companies selling to UK customers now have to register for UK VAT and collect said VAT for the UK govt. My guess is a lot of smaller companies will quite simply give up on the UK market. Imagine if every UK company selling into the EU had to register for VAT in each country! Boris may have scored a free-trade deal but its certainly not barrier free.

    So buying ‘British’ in the UK to cut down on carbon footprint/transport mileage really works in their case, doesn’t it.

    This business world really is arse over tit, isn’t it.

    I didnt realise a Brooks saddle bought in the UK had such a big carbon arseprint! I shall not be buying another!!!

    You couldn’t make it up could you? In years to come stand-up comedians will be dining out on post ironic shit like this. Well done Joris.

    Short sighted is an understatement, manufacturing here in the UK is all well and good but then shipping to Europe to then be shipped back to fulfill UK orders is neither cost or environmentally effective, why can’t the UK factory not simply supply it’s UK customer base directly before it loses it’s UK customers, what a shite business model.

    Before we condemn the company, perhaps worth giving them chance to make changes to their logistics choices. They would have put processes in place to ship via Italy for good reason, before this country decided to exit the EU, and no-one was able to put new processes in place in advance of Jan 1 as the relationship with EU wasn’t clear. I’m not a brooks fan, never had the patience to break one in, but wouldn’t want them damned for applying lean operations best practices and taking a little while to unpick things due to the colossal mess of brexit

    And in terms of it being environmentally unfriendly, let’s not forget we are a tiny market, so they will be weighing up economies of scale for shipping bulk from a distribution center in Italy I’d guess. I can’t imagine many saddles are sold direct to consumer. However, I don’t work in B2C, or the bike business, so happy to learn if someone can explain why this sort of choice shouldn’t be made pre-brexit.

    I was going for a Brooks on my new Sonder Camino, I don’t think I’ll bother now

    IMHO the saddles that have Italian parts are the Cambium ones. The natural rubber / fabric top is made in Italy, so at least all vegan / non-leather Brooks saddles take a trip to Italy. Do not know if any leathers ones do…

    …but blaming any company for Brexit problems is a bit disingenuous, as Boris and friends took all the way till the final deadline day of negotiations in December to make any kind of agreement with the EU. Definitely the blame for any problems lies squarely on the shoulders of these proud populists.

    On the upside, one of the Facebook commentators reckons Angela Merkel’s taking over at Singletrack Towers – Mark and Angela have to be the ‘dream team’ of Teutonic efficiency!!

    I could be wrong, but wasn’t it Selle Royal that bought Brooks in 2002 rather than Selle Italia?

    Also noted that the image at the top of the article is a Cambium, which – unless things have changed recently – is not a UK made saddle. They are (or were, anyway) made in Italy, but were branded as “Brooks England”.

    Image aside, it clearly says in the article ‘ all *British made saddles* are first shipped to Italy before being distributed Worldwide, including back to the UK.’ I fail to see how that’s in any way disingenuous? Unless, of course, they’ve just started doing it, which I doubt.

    U.K. gov introduced a new tax on overseas companies supplying the U.K. they did this on 30/12/20, in a 1800 page document, with many businesses shut for new year. They expect all companies in all countries on sales less than £135 to: register for U.K. VAT, collect U.K. taxes, do U.K. VAT returns, and then pay the U.K. government. I believe we are only country in the world to expect companies in other countries to collect our taxes.

    I sell Bum Butter world wide, however if Cuba or some other weird isolationist island wanted me to register for their taxes, collect taxes and then do the ball ache of VAT returns… plus set up a new taxation rule in my webshop (Cuba over £135 = 0, Cuba under £135= 20%) that I don’t think I have the functionality to do…. I would just add Cuba to the countries I can’t be arsed to deal with. Collect your own bloody taxes.

    Brooks have quite logically put the brakes on while they figure it all out. The U.K. market is big enough to justify the ball ache.

    However, take a moment to consider that our oven ready plan is to get people in other countries to collect our taxes. If every country did this, a small business would need to set up 195 different tax rates, constantly monitor the tax rates, and do 195 tax returns. In my opinion it’s effing lazy, and impractical. The temptation for fraud is pretty great. Collect the tax… and keep it. What the hell can U.K. gov do about it.

    On the plus side, lots of smaller retailers will not bother with the U.K., so whilst U.K. consumers will get less internet shopping choice, opportunities will open up to replicate the products not bothering with the U.K.

    “On the plus side, lots of smaller retailers will not bother with the U.K., so whilst U.K. consumers will get less internet shopping choice, opportunities will open up to replicate the products not bothering with the U.K.”

    No they won’t because we don’t have the skills or the logistics and we’ll still have to import most of the raw materials. What is more likely to happen is we’ll pay over the odds for products that people can be bothered to ship here.

    “I believe we are only country in the world to expect companies in other countries to collect our taxes.”

    I believe Switzerland does the same or at least very similar according to someone I know who lives in Switzerland. He says it reduces extortionate import admin fee’s nicely.

    “U.K. gov introduced a new tax on overseas companies supplying the U.K. they did this on 30/12/20, in a 1800 page document, with many businesses shut for new year. They expect all companies in all countries on sales less than £135 to: register for U.K. VAT, collect U.K. taxes, do U.K. VAT returns, and then pay the U.K. government”

    Not quite correct, it’s only for B2C on ecommerce platforms so your etailers, amazon etc and does not apply to B2B.

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