News and views
Although much of Kirkpatrick hasn’t changed significantly in over 160 years, there’s always something new going on within our team, in our factory or with our products – which you can keep up-to-date with right here.
At a time when we are debating whether to refurbish or demolish our chimney stack, this ghostly image was taken last night. Its steam not smoke.The annealing ovens had been fired up and the dampness was being burned off. Another load of castings becoming malleable iron to make the best door and window fittings.
Its debateable whether its an atmospheric shot or just bad photography. Answers on a post card or by e mail etc etc
In 2007 Kirkpatrick Ltd was approached by Keith Pacey of Traditional Window Fittings. He had identified a gap in the market place for a traditional antique iron monkey tail window fastener which would suit a double or triple glazed window. To work with double glazed units the fasteners needed to operate an espagnolette system and also have a much narrower back plate than a normal fastener for single glazed units.
By working together Traditional Window Fittings and Kirkpatrick came up with a workable solution and put new patterns based on the traditional Kirkpatrick curly end fastener into production, (protected with a patent held by Traditional Window Fittings). As with any new product there were teething problems to be ironed out but these were quickly solved and subsequently many thousands of these products have been specified on double and triple glazed windows.
Following on from the success of this product additional variations were developed based on the same method so that a bulb end fastener was also available. The obvious next step was to develop matching window stays in both antique and smooth iron versions in different finishes. Traditional style lever handles and letter plates suitable for modern doors were also subsequently developed.
As the only remaining UK manufacturer of traditional malleable iron door and window furniture Kirkpatrick was the obvious partner for Traditional Window Fittings. By using the skills and methods accrued over the last 160 years Kirkpatrick was able to react quickly and efficiently and expand into a market that had previously not been open to its products.
We’ve been making consistently excellent ironmongery for a very long time now, but we’ve never been quite as good at shouting about our products or our expertise. In fact, we’d go as far to say that we’ve been one of British manufacturing’s best kept secrets – despite the high level of quality and service that we offer our customers.
So our team decided to discuss the culture, values and ambition of Kirkpatrick, and we found that what was important to us in the beginning still stood today. So although some things have inevitably changed, our commitment to genuine craftsmanship, product quality and the pride we have for our work have not changed one bit.
The result of our soul-searching over recent months, is a refreshed brand direction built upon our new motto ‘handmade to last’ – including our shiny new website and, in-time, our great new ‘look and feel’ will filter through the whole of the business.
So now we’re ready to tell our story, please drop us a line as we’d love to know your thoughts.
We’re searching for the oldest piece of working Kirkpatrick Ironmongery in the UK. We have been manufacturing in Walsall since 1855 and we believe that because of the high quality of our products, there will be examples still in situ and still working from the early 20th century and even from the 19th century.
If you believe that you have one of our products which is still in regular use and you can date it, please take a photograph and send it to us. If you have details of when the product was purchased let us know. It may be, however, that you purchased a house with ironmongery already fitted. Again, if you believe it to be a Kirkpatrick product please send us an image with details.
The item may not be in our current range but we can authenticate it from our library of old catalogues.
So why not get snapping…?
Send any images to: email@example.com
As part of an ongoing rebrand project where we aim to give ourselves a fresh lick of paint, we photographed our team (well, those who weren’t camera shy) in their natural habitats in and around the Kirkpatrick factory right here in Walsall. You can learn more about the team and the expert roles that they undertake by visiting the Our people page in this section of our website.
As we do every year, Kirkpatrick again exhibited at Grand Designs Live – this time with an updated stand design and new look to boot. It was a very exhausting few days but well worth the effort as the stand was very busy across all three days and we met some lovely people along the way.
Congratulations to John Lovatt, one of our despatch department managers, who has recently achieved 25 years service. John started with us as a teenager and worked his way up to manager. He is responsible for an area including London, the South East and East Anglia. Thanks go out to John from the Directors and the whole Kirkpatrick team!