I had occasion to go into the Toy Barnhaus shop in Swan Walk, Horsham.
As I browsed the mountain of toys, ie Lego construction sets etc, I came to the ‘Playmobil’ sets. My son had enjoyed these sets when he was small, which prompted me look at what was current in the play market.
I was, however, totally shocked to find a set of a high street bank - Playmobil people, cash machines, counters etc, which included a BANK ROBBER carrying a gun and a ‘loot’ bag!
For goodness’ sake, just WHAT are we teaching our young children? It is bad enough with ‘cowboys and indians’ toting weapons, but at least there is some sort of ‘excuse’ in that it happened many years ago in less ‘enlightened’ times, perhaps.
With so much dreadful gun crime reported in the news both here and abroad, I think Toy Barnhaus should be ‘named and shamed’ for putting such a horrible ‘toy’ on their shelves.
Chesworth Gardens, Horsham
Editor’s note: Jamie Dickinson, Playmobil marketing manager, responds: “We have been producing police and emergency services play sets for over 35 years.
“One thing our customer feedback tells us is that it is important that children can be taught, through play, the importance of recognising good from evil and ‘baddies’ from ‘goodies’, as well as understanding scenes from real life.
“We fully support creating a safe environment for all children and would hope that in their own small way our sets deliver this in a secure, but believable way.”
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