Peels Engravers Gold, Solver and Memorial Engraving Established 1907

Founded in 1907 by Percy H.Peel, Percy who was classically trained It must be remembered that at this time an apprentice had to serve seven of years servitude before he could be called a craftsman, Percy having survived the Great War, gradually expanded the business, After some success the Wall Street Crash set the business back to its original form, later in the late twenties, early to middle thirties the business was gradually nursed back to its position prior to the Wall Street Crash; unfortunately the advent of the Second World War affected the business as most of the workers were called up. Percy was himself involved in war work. After the war Percy took on a apprentice persuaded no doubt by My grandmother Mabel Douglas who actually paid Percy to train her son Lawrence after Lawrence had served his seven year apprenticeship, in 1955 he was called upon as many young men were at that time, to do his national service. After his national service and with the business in decline also with a young family to feed and with Percy’s consent, Lawrence took a job as many young men retuning after Nation Service did in the area with ICI Wilton, Lawrence continued to work for Percy in between shifts and at weekends in 1964 Percy asked my father to take over the business the only two provisions were that the name of Peels would remain and Lawrence was to teach his two sons how to be craftsmen.

Up to the time my brother Gary joined the business in 1968 father had struggled on his own as Percy was losing his sight and retirement was looming on the horizon, Gary and father took advantage of the expansion of the local industries’, by the time I joined the business 1972 the course was set for expansion this was halted by the recession in the late seventies early eighties, through the late eighties nineties and noughties we stood still, then in twenty ten the worst recession in history affected the business in so many ways but we still strived to keep to the teachings of Percy, in April 2014 it was decided to move into our new premises this decision was not taken lightly but with fathers declining health and the costs involved after 107 years we closed our Gilkes Street work shop this building is Iconic in Middlesbrough and is part of the history of the town but unfortunately history does not pay the bills.

Here I suppose I should use the cliché that we are in new and exciting times but this is not so, but Gary and I are determined the business ethos laid down by Percy that the high quality of our work is paramount, that the teachings that have passed down through the generations remain as pertinent now as in the past and that the name of Peels lives on as part of the Middlesbrough landscape Ray Douglas July 2014.