Just 4 years after moving into our new premises in rural Bredgar, Kent in 2010, Wilkinson has made the decision to move to Sittingbourne in Kent.
We realised that we had almost run out of room in the coveted barn, despite the former swimming pool being converted into an underground bunker for glassware! More space was required in the workshops for storing and suspending chandeliers and lighting awaiting restoration.
An industrial unit in nearby Sittingbourne town became available and the opportunity was taken to purchase the unit and add a mezzanine level to create a large area for items of lighting being stored with us on a long term basis to be held, as well as housing just some of the tens of thousands of crystal pieces, metal castings and decorative dressings that the business had accumulated over the 70 years in business.
The arrival of Covid-19 in 2020 had a negative impact on many areas of the business, but it did present one very positive opportunity. Wilkinson’s offering renowned glassblower Carl Nordbruch the unit to set up a large and spacious glasshouse in Kent rather than blowing & at his “emergency studio” in a barn in Colwell Bay on the Isle of Wight.
When restrictions allowed, Carl and David Wilkinson built the furnaces and moved all of the equipment from the island into the unit and on 21st July 2020, after many months of waiting, the gas was connected.
It took a week for the glass to get up to the required temperature and then finally Carl was then able to blow our first pieces of glass in our new glasshouse.
In 2023 the adjoining unit at the business park became available and Wilkinson’s seized the moment and decided to relocate its workshops, offices and remaining staff (our glass cutters had moved to the existing unit in 2022 to allow the blowing and cutting departments to work closely and more efficiently) to the new unit.
Again a mezzanine level was added to maximise the space and doorways created between the 2 units so that they could be integrated into one large unit with all departments now working together under one roof again.
To find out more about Wilkinson and why we made the decision to move to Sittingbourne, browse our range of chandeliers in stock.