13/10/2008
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Motorhome makeover

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ONE of my Grandma’s old sayings springs to mind; make do and mend - a truism that may well be making a comeback in these days of ever increasing inflation.

Speaking as someone who always customises our motorhomes to our tastes, I can well understand the increasing trend for motorhome makeovers; certain manufacturers do have a strange sense of humour with fabric choices.

To this end I visited the family business of Regal Furnishings, a business that has flourished since being formed nearly 20 years ago and which is based in Ilkeston, Derbyshire.

Based conveniently just three miles from junction 25 of the M1, the company specialises in trimming motorhomes, touring caravans, horseboxes and race transporters costing upwards of a hundred thousand pounds.

They have even worked on boats, narrow boats and aeroplanes, as well as undertaking the upholstery work for many of the major motorhome manufacturers.

Even if you are a self-builder, you would be well advised to add value to your work by entrusting Barry and the Regal team with your bespoke furnishings.

Their policy is simple; they use only the highest grade of foam, the best fabrics from Belgium and Bridge of Weir Scottish hides. Combine this with a highly skilled workforce and you can see why this has reaped dividends, ensuring customer satisfaction and no complaints, even after continued use.

All of Regal’s cushions are zipped and quilted, using fabric, foam and interlining.

Drivers’ or captains’ seats are completely stripped and all foams renewed and they can easily match any shape or density.

Barry Hartley image
Boss Barry Hartley
The team are always busy, even in these difficult times, as owners are starting to realise that it is far cheaper to refurbish a motorhome than trade it in for a new one. A complete re-trim can be carried out in a single day, although two days are required for American RVs.

Customers arrive the day before their appointment and stay overnight at Regal’s premises (with electric hook-up) for an early start next morning.

Customers are driven (and collected on return) to a bus or train station for a day’s retail therapy or sight-seeing, while the team carries out their work.

On the day we visited, we witnessed a complete transformation, as a Pilote Galaxy 240 A-class had its tired interior and worn fabric changed in one day to a luxurious duo-tone leather palace.

The finished interior, quilted and buttoned, would surely add considerable value to the vehicle and of course enjoyment for the owners. The finishing is vastly superior to the original factory product, with additional trimming as requested and a reshaped dinette headrest.

It later transpired that the Pilote’s English owners, who now live in France, made the journey here following a personal recommendation.

Re-foaming, replacement springs or even just replacing saggy poor quality covers can all be undertaken, increasing your resale values.

A Pilote Galaxy 240 image
A Pilote Galaxy 240 before...
Pilote Galaxy 240 after work image
...and after Regal got to work on it














* This article is published in the November 2008 issue of Caravan Motorhome & Camping Mart.

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