About Us - Lindleywood's History
We're Simon and Helen Lindley from Barrowby in Lincolnshire and we set up Lindleywood in April 2008. We have actually been together since 1987, having met in the 6th form at school, although only got round to getting married in 2006! We have 2 young children and love tea, music, and camping (we even hired a campsite for our wedding!) We believe that our customers deserve beautifully handcrafted yet unusual - even quirky - products.
With a history between us of woodwork, property and furniture renovation, retail, and IT we have a wealth of experience that we wanted to put to good use. We've never been ones for the ordinary and always dreamed of working for ourselves. We wanted to be able to work around our family, so that we could be there for school shows, sports days etc, but we also wanted to actually create something with our own hands. We're still stunned that we're fortunate enough to make things out of wood for our job and we love every minute even of it……even when we're flat out busy and wondering when we'll get some sleep!
Lindleywood was created after we'd made a 'normal' bird box for ourselves and some ordinary but brightly painted bird boxes for family gifts. A friend suggested making shaped bird boxes instead, and we absolutely loved the idea. Our business name came to us simply: our surname is Lindley and we make things from wood (and for those of a IT mind, the name Lindleywood also had the benefit of having the .co.uk and .com web addresses available - a vital consideration for an online business!)
The wedding chapel, split screen campervan, and Tudor house bird boxes were the first designs we made back in 2008. It was such fun making them but as we're sticklers for detail, we thought we'd never get them finished!
We were thrilled to get our first sale from a paying member of public a few weeks after opening. And even more thrilled that our second customer was recommended by the first!
We're lucky that our workshop is in a village and overlooks some fields - they are a big source of inspiration, although we can equally be inspired by vehicles or a walk through a city looking at buildings! We love architecture of all periods - with a fascination which spans the centuries from Bronze Age round houses to 1960s Modernist and beyond.
Every item is handmade by us and most are personalised. Plus we have a bespoke service which sees us making copies of people's houses etc as bird boxes. The standard bird boxes take between 1-6 hours each to make, much more for bespoke work - our biggest bespoke orders were both copies of pubs, one in Derbyshire and one in London, which took weeks. And our most complex bespoke order was a very grand design, which involved working from architects plans as the property wasn't yet built!
As we've grown we've expanded our workshop but still make everything ourselves and use all UK suppliers for our packaging and raw materials. It's important for us to do so - we believe in supporting other small businesses.
Our products have been seen in national magazines and newspapers plus on national TV, most notably on ITV's Love Your Garden and The Alan Titchmarsh Show. We have been nominated for, and also won, the odd business award along the way, including Theo Paphitis #SBS (Small Business Sunday) and Jacqueline Gold #WOW.
(Please forgive that all the photos are of Helen - Simon prefers not going to the high profile public events!)
Not bad for a little business from Lincolnshire!
Now you know our history! If you would like to know a little bit about how we work, you can read more at About Us - The Production!