Established in 1895 Victoria Carpets has grown to become one of Britain’s best-known and well respected carpet brands.
Manufacturing all types and qualities of tufted products, produced in wool, wool mix and man-made fibres which cover a wide selection of styles and price points, Victoria Carpets is also one of a few companies which still produces woven Wilton carpets.
Predominantly supplying independent retailers, Victoria Carpets is also proud to be one of the largest suppliers to the John Lewis Partnership, for which we hold stock ranges and provide a stocking, cutting, wrapping and distribution service.
On 1st January 2013 Victoria Carpets was granted a Royal Warrant to Her Majesty The Queen. We have been carpeting the Royal Households for a number of years, and also supplied the red carpet for the Royal Wedding of Prince William to Catherine Middleton in April 2011.
Victoria Carpets is a founding member of the Carpet Foundation and has won numerous industry awards, making us proud of our reputation for producing high quality carpets that are engineered to stand the test of time.
Victoria produces carpet for both the residential and commercial markets
Victoria Carpets Limited was founded in 1895 in the Scottish town of Kirkcaldy.
The company began trading as a small tapestry and printing operation from premises in Victoria Street - hence the distinctive name. The company founders were three enterprising partners - George Anton, Alexander Hamilton and John Johnson - who subsequently looked further afield for the development of the business, eventually deciding on Kidderminster, Britain's premier carpet manufacturing town.
In 1900, therefore, the weaving plant was relocated from Scotland to the Worcestershire town - the mill being situated on the River Stour, which was used as a source of power. Even then, staff loyalty was at a premium. The story goes that many of the company's employees actually walked the whole distance from Kirkcaldy to Kidderminster in order to keep their jobs when the plant moved.
Originally, Victoria's manufacturing skills were devoted to printed tapestry carpet rugs and squares before subsequently progressing to Chenille carpet squares following the installation of a plant designed specifically for this purpose in 1911. After the First World War, Victoria then proceeded to build up its Chenille plant to incorporate more than 50 looms - though by the 1940's subsequent changes in fashion saw the end of the company's production of printed tapestry carpets. There had also been a fundamental change in the managerial structure of the company. In 1920 John Johnson retired and by 1927 Alexander Hamilton had died - so leaving George Anton and his family to manage the business.
During the early 1930's, Victoria Carpets Limited went on to enjoy rapid growth by virtue of a forward looking marketing policy which saw the company supplying plain Wilton carpet in 40 inch widths to the new motor industry. Among the clients were such prestigious names as Rolls Royce and Bentley. At the same time, the company consolidated its position as a manufacturer of domestic Axminster body and squares and proceeded to build up a sizeable plant of Gripper Axminster looms until the advent of the Second World War halted production. Like many other factories, it was used as a munitions plant to support the war effort until 1945.
George Anton's death in 1947 saw the management of the company pass to his two sons, Charles and James, who were quick to identify new market opportunities presented by the growing international demand for floorcoverings. In 1953, therefore, Victoria established a new carpet plant in Dandenong, Australia, with the aim of consolidating the parent company's export trade to that country. The 1950's also saw the company move into the field of tufted carpets - an American innovation, which subsequently took the UK market by storm. In 1956, Victoria duly installed the first of its tufted looms at the Kidderminster factory, so paving the way for major expansion. This led, in 1963, to the construction of a purpose-built factory in nearby Worcester Road. Significantly enough, the same year also saw the company floated on the Stock Exchange where its shares trade in the 'Household Goods & Textiles' sector under the name of Victoria PLC (VCP).
In 1989 Victoria Carpets decided to become more vertically integrated and purchased Westwood Yarns in Holmfirth, West Yorkshire, to produce yarns for their tufted carpet production. Westwoods, today, are one of Europe's most modern 'Dry Woollen' spinning mills and supply much of the high-tech yarn used by Victoria. Burgeoning sales in Australia, where Victoria has become the third largest manufacturer, demanded that the Company should become more vertical there too and in 1995 the Company acquired the Castlemaine Spinning Mill and Pacific Textiles in November 2002, in order to provide high quality carpet yarns for its Dandenong carpet manufacturing plant.
The story to date is completed with Victoria's acquisition of the two leading carpet brands in the Republic of Ireland; Munster Carpets in September 2002 and Navan Carpets in July 2003, making it the leading supplier of quality carpets to the Irish contract and retail carpet market. Despite having a global turnover in excess of US $74million per annum and over 750 employees, the family ethos, with an emphasis on traditional skills, craftsmanship and caring attitude to employees and customers alike, is still of paramount importance today.