Newsletter COVID-19 March 2020



Mantel Farm is a family run garden farming business located in the heart of the East Sussex countryside
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Mantel Farm - Plans for continued customer Service during the COVID-19 crisis

24th March 2020

We first of all want to wish all of our customers the very best of health during these difficult times.  The safety of our customers and staff is at the forefront of our mind and as such our shop has currently closed to walk-in customers.   Our staff have been fantastic and are supporting us the best they can to continue to care for our animals and enable us to offer a collection and delivery service to ensure we can get animal feed and supplies to our customers.  Fred and Josh are at the moment still able to travel to work and Tracy can continue to keep in touch with you through social media and carry out much of the admin from home.  Dan also works in a care home so is unable to get to our farm, he is doing such an amazing job and our best wishes are with him.


It feels like the world has changed so much in such a short time!  and it has been quite a week here; at the start of the week we began to contact people to postpone our March training courses and put in place plans for future bookings, then on Wednesday the phone, email and website went crazy with people wanting to buy chickens and we have not been able keep up with it all.  So please accept our apologies if you are waiting for us to get back to you but we are working through all the paperwork and calls as quickly as we possibly can.  Now we are having to temporarily close our shop and consider how we will continue to supply our customers.


To help us all get through these exceptional times we have put in place the following plans, and we hope it will reassure all of our customers that we are dealing with your individual situations.  We are really fortunate to have so many fantastic customers and most have already shown a great deal of understanding (although there is always one - we have had legal proceedings issued within hours of us postponing a course!)  We have found it especially hard to ask our customers who have booked on training courses to be patient and let us work through our plans before asking us for refunds.  We know everyone is experiencing difficulties in these times but by allowing us time to re-arrange the courses and transfer bookings to a later date it will spread the cost to our business, enable us to manage our cash flow, help us to keep our staff employed and have time to seek support from the government.  We are confident that we will as a business get through this and can assure you that we will always do the best we can for all of our customers. 


So, although our shop is currently closed we will ensure our customers are able to get their animal feed, supplies and equipment as best we can.  Going forward we are therefore offering a collection and delivery service and have outlined our plans for existing orders in the boxes below:


Farm Collections:

We are offering collections from our farm.  Please place your order on our website and we will have them ready for you to collect:  Items can only be collected from our shop by appointment on a Friday and Sunday.   


Local Deliveries:

We are offering an extended local delivery service for our customers.  Please place your order on our website and ensure you select the correct delivery option in the shopping cart.  Local Deliveries will be made in our electric van and are on a Thursday, deliveries to further afield will be by arrangement.


Courier Deliveries: 

We will continue to offer a courier service.  Delivery times will be subject to the courier company and please understand they are extremely busy at the moment.


Phone Orders:

We will answer your calls as soon as possible, please leave a message if we are unable to get to the phone and we will call you back. 


General Contact:

As usual we will do our best to offer the best help and advice we can give.  If your enquiry is about an existing order or supply, please take into account the guidance and arrangements below.  Our phone is extremely busy and we are trying to keep it as free as possible for our customers that do not have access to emails or internet to ensure we can get supplies to them. 





If you have booked on a course...

Courses March - June 2020

Everybody who has bookings with us will be contacted as soon as possible, for now we have postponed all courses up to the end of June.  We sincerely hope to be able to re-schedule your booking for later in the year, if this does not become possible then we will of course offer a full refund, however we ask you to give us time and support to try to rearrange the courses.  We need time to seek government business support to be able to meet the number of refunds that may become necessary.  By spreading the refunds we will be in a much stronger position to be able to continue with these courses in the future and look forward to welcoming you back to Mantel Farm.


We will make a decision regarding courses planned beyond the end of June as soon as we can.  Please bear with us and wait to be contacted so that we can deal with each course in turn. 


If you have ordered chickens...

Hybrid Hens, Pekin Bantams and Pure Breeds: 

We have now sold out of hens from our current flocks, although we are expecting more birds soon.  At the moment there is no restiction on the delivery of these flocks therefore our suppliers ensure us that the deliveries will be made and we can honour all orders placed. 


If you have placed an order for chickens then your reservation is still secure, please await further instrucion for arrangements to collect or have your birds delivered, we will be in touch as soon as we have more information. 

If we had previously given a collection date, this no longer applies as our shop is no longer open to walk in customers, so please wait for new arrangements.


Please bear with us and wait to be contacted so that we can work through the orders to allocate the birds.


If you have booked your animals to stay with us...

Holiday bookings March - June 2020

We understand that holidays are being cancelled and so you may not need to board your animals with us.  Please contact us if this is the case for existing bookings between now and the end of June.  We will issue a full credit note to transfer your booking to a future date, please bear with us in the short term as we will be very busy with this and other paperwork that this crisis has generated.    


Other online orders...

Hatching Eggs, Housing, Feed, Supplies and Equipment:

We are working our way through all exisitng orders to make arrangements for collections and deliveries.  Please wait to be contacted as we are processing these as quickly as we  possibly can. 

Please do not just arrive at our farm without an appointement as the shop is now closed to walk in customers.


If you have expressed an interested in chickens ...

Hybrids, Bantams and Pure Breeds

We have flocks of hens due to arrive withing the next few weeks and our suppliers are working extremely hard to get them to us.  Due to the current circumstances and demand we can not yet confirm the dates and breeds of these birds but as soon as we have more information we will be in touch. 

If you have already placed an order for hens please see the information above.

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