Recounting the story of Bridgman, covering 45 years of the finest in British furniture
For over 45 years, Bridgman has created the very finest luxury furniture and accessories. As they’ve grown over three generations, their ‘Best of British’ collections, designed here in the UK, continue to redefine how we relax, entertain and enjoy the finer things our homes and gardens have to offer, expertly crafted to last for years to come.
Bridgman’s story began when Peter Bridgman followed his father into the furniture industry, founding PJ Bridgman & Company Ltd in 1977 to manufacture reproduction chairs and TV cabinets from mahogany. From the creation of their very first piece, three core values have been at the heart of their furniture – quality, comfort and style. With full control over the design, manufacturing and delivery process, Bridgman’s quality and service are unmatched to this day.
During the 1980s, the company soon started supplying JVC, Grundig and Toshiba with TV cabinets, and Princess Diana was photographed alongside her family on one of Bridgman’s beautifully crafted chairs, cementing the brand firmly within the British furniture industry. In 1989, Bridgman introduced premium-grade teak timber garden furniture to their range, using their unique detailing machine to craft outstanding pieces like the Harvest Bench, one of their earliest ground-breaking designs. The piece featured intricately pressed details in the backrest, rather like carvings, which won the company a number of awards.
Unsurprisingly, Bridgman furniture soon became recognised across the country for its design excellence as the company turned its attention to creating the finest outdoor furniture on the market. In 1990, Bridgman began showcasing new products at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show, a 30-year tradition that has been a particularly special place for the brand to connect with like-minded customers and immerse in the gardening and outdoor furniture world.
At the turn of the millennium, Bridgman quickly identified a demand for low-maintenance rattan garden furniture and started appointing the expertise of the finest rattan handweavers in the world. The UK team, based in Enfield, took ownership of the entire design and production process, working closely with partner manufacturers overseas to become the first company in Britain to supply premium rattan furniture. Their pieces were, and still are, expertly handwoven by Indonesian weavers who have woven natural wicker for generations. Today, they weave high-density synthetic material round powder-coated aluminium frames, capable of withstanding the elements for many years.
Bridgman are one of only a handful of companies licensed to supply furniture woven from this specialist Hularo wicker, the finest synthetic rattan in Europe. The UV inhibitors and colour are integral to the fibre, giving it unrivalled durability against wear and weathering and allowing Bridgman to offer industry-leading 10-year guarantees.
In 2011, Bridgman introduced water-protective and stain-resistant technology to create premium fully waterproof cushions, another statement piece in their award-winning catalogue. The only ones of their kind in the UK, these cushions have been tested against red wine, coffee and even pure bleach stains and can remain outside all year round, come rain or shine. Both uniquely practical and sumptuously soft, the cushions are filled with a supportive foam that ensures unmatched comfort not to be found anywhere else.
Ever inspired to innovate, Bridgman’s award-winning outdoor catalogue now spans rattan, aluminium, resin, rope and even fully upholstered designs. Their limited-edition Ascot Modular Collection brings the comfort, detail and style of interior design into the outdoors with revolutionary fully upholstered sofas designed to create the ultimate alfresco lounging experience. New for 2022, their contemporary Monaco and Cannes Collections have been expertly handcrafted using UV-resistant premium rope, for a paired back look created for modern outdoor living.
Inspired by their time at RHS Chelsea Flower Show, the company opened their flagship store in Enfield, the UK’s largest luxury garden furniture showroom. This was followed swiftly by the opening of four more showrooms in Walton-on-Thames, Winchester, Old Amersham and Wilmslow across the 2010s, and two new stores in Royal Tunbridge Wells and Cheltenham just this year.
The secret to Bridgman’s four and a half decades of success has been an uncompromising promise to provide their customers with the very best service, quality and experience possible. Unafraid to innovate, Bridgman’s three-generation family business continues to transform lives, experiences and spaces with luxurious, beautifully made furniture.