The story behind the brand that survived the Blitz

England is home to some of the best and most sought-after gentlemen’s outfitters in the world. St. James alone is filled with tailors and bespoke shirt-makers that clients travel the world far and wide to visit – from royals to the quintessential English gentleman and everyone in between. But with a strong history and heritage at the core of almost all of these shops, you’d be right to assume it is a hard task for them to stay present and relevant, particularly in a market that’s constantly changing, that leans towards trends and that is largely focused on the online world.

Enter New & Lingwood: a brand that got back up after it was bombed during the Blitz in 1940; that has been one of the official school uniform outfitters for Eton for the past 5 generations; and whose clients continue to travel the globe just to get their fix of the brand. So, what’s their story?

1865

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(Eton schoolboys arriving at Lord’s Cricket Ground in 1928. Photo: Getty)

Elisabeth New and Samuel Lingwood launched New & Lingwood in 1865 and began to lay the impressive foundation on which the business still prides itself: unrivalled quality of merchandise and a truly personal service. The pair later married and the brand first established a name for itself in Eton in Berkshire, where its relationship with the school blossomed and remains as strong after 150 years.

1922

After unrivalled success in Eton, the brand made the move to one of the most important streets in London’s St. James, Jermyn Street. St. James was then, and is now, the most important area for any English brand appealing to gentlemen to be associated with, particularly one that had gained as early a success as New & Lingwood. So the move made sense and was met with admiration and an impressive influx of new and loyal clients from all over the world. New & Lingwood was still one of Eton’s official outfitters, but they were also entering the world as a gentleman’s outfitters: a place that clients could rely on for impeccable outfits, bespoke shirts and amazing accessories.

1940

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The store that so many clients had come to associate themselves with was completely destroyed during the Second World War and the Blitz across London. The whole store was ripped apart and everything that the brand had worked so hard to achieve was completely destroyed.

1945 – 2016

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(Photo: New & Lingwood Spring/Summer 16 collection)

Shortly after the war, New & Lingwood re-established itself on the same street in St. James, at number 53, and began to rebuild slowly but surely with the same core values.

This year will see New & Lingwood celebrate 150 years as one of the most sought-after and trust-worthy gentleman’s tailors in the world, all with a quintessentially British flair. Today’s collections are inspired by the ultimate English gentleman, by countryside shoots and great British homes. The aim of the game with New & Lingwood is sophistication and comfort through everything from dressing gowns and shirts to shoes and boots – and it’s safe to say they fulfil this very well.

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Visit New & Lingwood online here or at 53 Jermyn Street, St James’s, London, SW1Y 6LX, or 118 High Street, Eton, Windsor, Berkshire, SL4 6AN

India Gladstone

India Gladstone

India is the Online Editor of Gentleman's Journal

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