Bence Builders Merchants celebrates milestone anniversary

Bence Builders Merchants celebrates milestone anniversary

George Bence & Sons has become one of the few businesses in the world to make it to 170 years. Indeed, it becomes one of only 0.001% of firms that make it to this very special achievement.

Born in 1854 in the reign of Queen Victoria, deliveries were made by horse and cart from the Mount Pleasant area in the centre of the spa town of Cheltenham. To this day, the company still operates its headquarters from this original site.

Over 52,000 working days later, ‘Bences’ – as it is affectionately known – now has eight branches with 150 skilled and knowledgeable staff with an eclectic range of skills. The business spans from mixed merchants to high end kitchen & bathroom showrooms, stand alone roofing, decorating and plumbing centres to a supply and fit doors & windows operation along with a thriving online
bathrooms company.

Bences is reportedly the largest independent supplier of building materials in the Cotswolds and holds a staff retention rate four times the national average.

Chris Bence, the fifth generation of the family to run the business and current Group Chairman, commented: “As a multi generation family business owner, I can look with much satisfaction at our company and family history and examine what we’ve done to stay relevant over the years. The business has survived – and since thrived – through world wars, pandemics and multiple recessions.

“I feel so honoured and content that I have played a part in our current history and do not doubt that we will make 200 years under the next generations!”

Paul Bence, sixth generation and current Group Managing Director, continued: “Our family business continues to be a neverending journey and one that is ever-evolving. It is the accumulation of great effort day after day, eventually developing longevity, which then very much is the becoming of our tradition.

“After 170 years, we truly believe our customers are now increasingly aware of who they’re
buying from and that they want to purchase from businesses that really care about its customers and its products. I feel that profit and sustainability aren’t mutually exclusive, and the latter should always come before the former.”

Paul added: “Whenever I can, I unashamedly use our status as a sixth generation, family-run business to differentiate us from the competition. I am extremely proud to have been given the
opportunity to drive our special business into an 18th decade, leading product diversification
through our international, multi-award winning, little old building materials firm from
Cheltenham Spa.”

Bences has plans to open two branches in the coming period together with a £½ million renovation of its flagship kitchen & bathroom showroom Obsidian Interiors beginning in July.

The company has put together this special video to honour its 170 years of service:

Builders' merchant George Bence & Sons has become one of the few firms in the world to make it to 170 years in business.

Builders' merchant George Bence & Sons has become one of the few firms in the world to make it to 170 years in business.

Images © Antony Thompson/Thousand Word Media Ltd.

Related posts