Visit to the Launer factory in Walsall


I visited the Launer (London) Factory which is based in Walsall on Friday 20 January 2023. I was shown around by Gary Barnes the manager of the the factory who started there as an apprentice. 

Launer was founded in 1940 and has provided the late Queen with handbags and small leather goods since 1968. In the 1960s The Queen was a regular customer and favoured Launer over any other brand and continued carrying Launer at each and every public and state occasion. In 1992 The Queen visited the Launer factory in honour of a milestone birthday and in support of her long association with the company. The Company carries the Queens Warrant an important symbol of the late Queen’s appreciation  

Launer was bought in 1981 by Gerald Bodmer, a successful businessman who has had two decades of experience in the gifts and leather goods business. He worked tirelessly in promoting the brand and keeping its assets intact. Gerald turned Launer into a successful business supplying Selfridges and Fortnum and Mason as well as the Royal Household. 

Every style is handmade, a process that requires skilled investment. One handbag alone can take up to eight hours on average to make. It is the sole duty of one expert craftsperson to compose the different components into an item. Launer upskill their workforce, some of whom have been working for the company for many years. It was wonderful to see the machines and the templates for the bags. and meet the dedicated workforce.  Gary told me Gerald was a musician and the bags have names of musical terms such as Traviata.

More information about Launer can be found on their website: