In The New Creative Director Role At Westley Richards

As we begin 2020, I would like to take this good moment to introduce myself to the friends and followers of Westley Richards who regularly read our much-loved blog, The Explora. My name is Stephen Humphries and I recently joined the company in the brand new role of Creative Director. A thrilling opportunity that will involve the continued elevation of this adored company – through greater visibility to the wider field sports world and taste making community-at-large, and the establishment of Westley Richards fine leather goods & sporting attire as the ultimate in style for the well-versed adventurer.

My background has been within the luxury brands environment for many years having collaborated with a number of globally recognised British and international prestige brands, from fashion, jewellery and leather goods to elite beverages, hospitality and publishing.

Having been surrounded by sporting enthusiasts throughout my career it is a true privilege to mention the name Westley Richards, and I look forward to bringing my distinct expertise honed over the years with similar spirited businesses – those that are family-owned, steeped in heritage and with unparalleled quality and hand craftsmanship.

In the first few months here I have been getting to know all the many wonderful and awe-inspiring parts of the company and its impressive premises in Birmingham. By way of its exceptional gunmakers, engravers, leather workers, production & sales teams, brand & photographic departments and senior management.

Those of you who have had the privilege to visit the Pritchett Street factory will first enter into our flagship store, a showroom that far surpasses any selling environment I have visited in Mayfair. Inside, a constant selection of Westley Richards British country clothing, smart travel bags and fine leather goods are on display alongside our selected partner brands, catering for English shoots, Safaris and adventurous travellers alike.



Past the gun room, housing clients recent bespoke creations, one takes the stairs to the first floor, home to the gun factory. There a hive of activity takes place where bench-trained gunmakers are in full flow, each at different points of the gunmaking process. Having studied and begun my career in product engineering this was a particular delight for me as many familiar machines, tools and paraphernalia were in attendance. One area of handcraft that really struck me came in the stocking room, where I witnessed some checkering being applied. This I could tell immediately, required such accuracy and dexterity from our makers, as any mistakes would be critical.

Side by side with the gun factory sits our leather department, this is rare amongst our major competitors who often manufacture their leather goods outside of the UK. English made leather is second to none, the country’s traditional skills and styles lend to an extremely high quality product, with endurance, a trait proudly synonymous with the Westley Richards name.



And finally, to the second and uppermost floor. For those dedicated readers amongst you will know, this is The Apartment. A beautifully designed interior space resplendent with Westley Richards ephemera, trophies, literature, photographs, artworks and artefacts. Collected and assembled by Simon Clode during his transformation of the business to what we know today. This remarkable place has such visual, textural and historical appeal even the most esteemed of our clients are stopped in their tracks on entry, and has often delighted them for many an hour on their visits.

In my short time here it is evident that there is an unbelievable depth of heritage and character around the company that must be carefully nurtured, as has been by those many important figures past and present. With this front of mind I, along with the rest of the team, very much look forward positively, distinctively and with great expectation into the bright and exciting future ahead.

On that note, I leave you for now with our recent wordsmithing of the future facing Westley Richards vision that first featured in the inaugural winter retail catalogue – Collections 2020.

“Established upon a heritage of wild adventure, Westley Richards has long been regarded as one of the finest gun and rifle makers the world has ever seen. At the side of generations of audacious huntsmen, we proudly handcraft history’s most beautiful and prized art guns, leather goods and sporting attire, taken on journeys like no other.

Our independent spirit has cultivated an unparalleled culture of innovation, artistry and excellence for well over 200 years, commanding enviable respect from our peers and continuously lionised by true characters of the outdoors.

As the leading light of England’s original Gun Quarter, Westley Richards are honoured to be part of Birmingham’s illustrious past and modern renaissance.”

 

18 thoughts on “In The New Creative Director Role At Westley Richards

  1. Stephen I wish you the very best in your new role.I have no doubt you will contribute your part in making the best that can be made.

    • Dear Neil,

      Many thanks for your kind encouragement, I believe you can tell I certainly am looking forward to the job in hand.

      All the best,
      Stephen

  2. Welcome to Westley Richards Mr. Humphries. I was fortunate to have visited WR in October 2016. Good luck in your new job. I believe you already know you are now working in one of the preeminent and historically significant businesses within all of Britain. Please do your best to help keep it there! I look forward to to reading your future articles in the Explora. Good Luck!!!

    • Dear David,

      Continuing to elevate this great name is absolutely at the forefront of the mind. Good to hear the Explora readers are eagerly anticipating our future articles, which by the way will start to feature some broader topics that align with the new company vision. We look forward to receiving you again on your next trip to Birmingham.

      All the best,
      Stephen

  3. Stephen

    Congratulations on your appointment, I’m sure you will love every minute, such a diverse environment to work in with lots of differing personalities whether employees or clients.

    All the very best

    Peter.

    • Dear Peter,

      Many thanks for your kind words, and it is true I am enjoying every minute. The diversity of characters is what has made and will continue to make this a prized company, and long may that continue!

      All the best,
      Stephen

  4. Congratulations! I have long admired WRs aesthetic and design, and how every asset, whether written, visual, or a physical product consistently carries with it the “WR feel.” I look forward to seeing what your future with WR will bring.

    Cheers,

    Baxter

    • Dear Baxter,

      Great to hear from another passionate Westley Richards advocate. My first few months here have been to drink in the spirit and aesthetic of company and couldn’t agree more that it is both highly desirable, authentic and truly special. I look forward to sharing that with more people throughout the world.

      All the best,
      Stephen

  5. Good Day Sir Mr. Humphries,
    Congrats on your new job at Westley Richards, Mr. Baxter they are indeed one of, if not the very best builder in the World today. I happen to know some of crew there for a while now. there will be days you will look at what I am saying and think??? Mr. Daigle was right this can be like hearding Cats!!!! All in good fun..

    In Christ
    Vance,

  6. Dear Mr. Humphries,
    I congratulate you on your appointment and wish you all the best in your new leadership role at Westley Richards, one of the world’s best known hunting weapon manufacturers. Goood Luck !
    All the very best

    Vlastik Petak

    • Dear Vlastik,

      Great to hear from you and appreciate the fantastic support I’m receiving from yourself and all the dedicated Westley Richards fans.

      Best Wishes,
      Stephen

    • Dear Igor,

      The Explora is and will continue to be the world’s leading best gun and rifle blog, have no doubt. It will both regain the original spirit of its founder, Simon Clode, whilst retain its dedication to finest handmade firearms ever made.

      All the best,
      Stephen

    • Dear Matthew,

      Thank you so much, I know that you are aware of what can be achieved with such a prized company like Westley Richards.

      All the best,
      Stephen

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