Independent family run builders merchant Elliotts has celebrated its 175th year in business, by delivering materials in Southampton yesterday (November 8) by horse and cart.
Staff took goods to city builders RH Hammond in traditional style from Elliotts headquarters in Millbank Wharf, using an authentic 19th century flatbed dray pulled by two horses – exactly the delivery method used when Elliotts was founded in 1842.
Managing Director, Tom Elliott, and his father Stuart Mason-Elliott, who is Chairman, dressed in 1840s attire for the occasion, with the latter even travelling to work on his penny farthing bicycle.
He said: “Back in 1842, my ancestor Thomas Elliott ran a very different company. Our headquarters is still on Millbank Wharf in Northam but we now have 13 branches across the south and nearly 300 staff. We pride ourselves on our old-fashioned customer service and enjoy great relationships with our customers and suppliers.”
The cart was loaded with sand and timber by employees dressed as 1840s yardsmen before departing to make the delivery to Queens Terrace. There, it was received by longstanding customer Richard Hammond, managing director of RH Hammond, which was founded in 1894. Like Elliotts, the company is still family-owned.
Elliotts is now run by the sixth generation of the family, Tom Elliott, and is the 112th oldest family business in the world, according to familybusinessunited.com.
Tom Elliott said: “We are proud of our heritage but, at the same time, we always make sure Elliotts is ahead of the game in supplying the latest and best products to our customers. Our range of building supplies is outstanding and we are constantly looking for new innovations for the business.”