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The third-generation Bailey Autograph motorhomes were launched this week.

Available in eight layouts including new fixed bed and fixed island bed variants, and with and without dedicated rear travel seats. They represent what you might call “the real deal” with a Peugeot drive train, AL-KO chassis, Alde heating and a policy of no hidden extras so a dedicated motorhome owner can be assured that the level of luxury will meet or exceed expectations.

The full eight-model range – which I have to say look pretty attractive to me – will be on show in Hall 19 at this year’s NEC Show October 15th to 20th.

It is interesting how time plays tricks with our memories. Back in 2011 when Bailey announced its first motorhomes it seemed a very big deal indeed – a brave move perhaps – and certainly a strong signal that the caravan-only company was prepared to innovate, change and move with the market. During the last eight years the company has continued to dominate the caravan market – so no loss of focus there – and has become a serious and successful motorhome manufacturer fighting its way with the Hymers, Rapidos and a string of other UK and continental European manufacturers. We all know that companies often struggle with change; they either don’t change or don’t do it very well and are burdened by their history.

Not so Bailey I would suggest.

The launch was held at the delightful Stanton House Hotel near Swindon and whilst obviously the launch was the all important part, I had a bit of a trip down memory lane. The original manor house was renovated and hugely improved to meet the demands of Japanese guests from the nearby Honda car factory and their suppliers. I was a fairly frequent visitor there because of my automotive background and although the hotel has for many years embraced all visitors with or without a Honda connection, the signs are bilingual, the website is in English and Japanese and the restaurant has an exceptional Japanese influence as well as catering of course for European tastes.

Christopher Macgowan