Celtic & Co.'s second Queen's Award - a long awaited visit
In Spring 2020 we received the official letter that we had been awarded our second Queen's Award for Enterprise in the International Trade category after winning one in 2018. Fewer than 200 businesses are given this award each year, so to achieve two in three years is a fantastic achievement we are all extremely proud of.
Usually there is a big award ceremony planned in May of the winning year, but because of the ongoing pandemic in 2020, the handover of the award was postponed. On the 17th of December 2020 it was finally time for the anticipated official award visit. Celtic & Co. opened once again their doors for Her Majesty The Queen’s official representative in Cornwall, Lord Lieutenant Colonel Edward Thomas Bolitho, his Cadet, Flight Sergeant Robert Libby, the Vice Chairman of Cornwall Council, Councillor Mary May and Sarah Goodall from Cornwall Council as support to the Lieutenancy.
The small and socially distanced ceremony took place in one of our beautifully decorated office rooms, where founders and directors Nick and Kath Whitworth together with Head of Sales and Marketing, Zoe Bray, Head of Operations, Karl Headleand, Head of Production and Wholesale and Product Developers Morgan Webber-Newman and Katy Richards were welcoming the group.
Colonel Bolitho had already visited Celtic & Co. for the Queen's Award ceremony in 2018, which then took place in our warehouse and factory premises with all members of staff. He gave a lovely speech and Councillor Mary May joined in to emphasise the importance of the local support an internationally trading company like Celtic & Co. gives. Having sailed through stormy winds in 2020 and with Brexit on the radar, too, we are especially honoured to swing the British flag up high and showcase that British manufacturing and International Trade is still successfully ongoing.
“It has been a fantastic year for our International markets with sales outside of the UK up by c45% year on year, well ahead of our overall business growth. Excluding our more mature US market, international sales are up by c350% year on year with Australia, Germany and Canada all performing extremely well this year. Looking forward, we are aiming to grow these markets while we continue to launch the brand in new countries.” Says Nick Whitworth, Co-Founder of Celtic & Co.
Kath Whitworth, Co-Founder of Celtic & Co: “We’re excited by the potential to grow our brand internationally and are seeing a really strong response to the sustainable, British made ethos that encapsulates our products. We’re looking to grow in countries where we see established groups of consumers who are influenced by the impact their clothing has on the world around them and understand how best to reduce the environmental footprint of their clothing purchases.”
Colonel Bolitho also had a lovely chat with Morgan Webber-Newman and was very interested in the process of making a garment; from the first ideas to the early designs and samples and the final manufacturing. He had a hundred questions and Morgan was very happy to answer them all!
Afterwards we took Colonel Bolitho, Councillor Mary May, Sergeant Libby and Mrs. Goodall on a brief tour through our Covid-19 safe environment in the factory and warehouse, where they were shown the many steps it takes to make a sheepskin boot or slipper.