Category: Home and garden shops
In 1899 Ernest Fishpool borrowed £85 to set up his first shop. Today, decades and many changes later, the store is still based in Waltham Cross but is now the largest quality furniture store in the south east of England. The shop originally sold clothes as well as furniture and, as business was booming, the forward thinking young 29-year old found new premises at 162/164 High Street in Waltham Cross – just a few doors away from today’s store. In fact, it was only a few years later in 1906 when Ernest took over the lease of Fishpools’ current address 109-115 High Street. By this time, Ernest had married and started the family, which would go on to build up what is now a great family firm. Ernest remained ambitious and ahead of his time and just after World War One finally ended, he invested in motorised transport in the form of two old army ambulances, which were converted into furniture delivery vehicles.
Both of Ernest’s sons, Clarence and Howard joined their father at the firm and made it a real family affair. And when Ernest died in 1934, they continued to ensure that the tradition of providing their customers with the best products and service remained.
In 1957, the third generation of the Fishpool family joined the firm. John Fishpool, Clarence’s son continued the development of the company and during his time at the store made many changes including the opening of the New Ford Road warehouse.
As with the general pace of the eighties, things changed at Fishpools. The Coffee Shop was relocated to its current position on the 1st Floor, the toy department closed to make way for the lighting department and the second-hand department was transformed into the Budget Shop – but during these changes providing the best for the customers was always at the forefront of the family’s mind.
The Leather Centre opened in 1993 and further expansion took place culminating in the addition of 8,000 sq ft of furniture displays. In 1999 Fishpools celebrated its 100th year of business and still the company was determined to provide an innovative yet accessible range of furniture with something for everyone.
After proving to be a huge success Fishpools decided to expand the Budget Shop further and created a store in its own right. In August 2002 the Budget & Outlet Shop opened next door to the main store. In 2003 John Fishpool’s son – Simon became managing director, the fourth generation of the family to run the ever expanding business.
With the interest in interiors on the increase Simon and John agreed that more space was needed and in 2004 a major expansion plan was unveiled. Fishpools embarked upon a breathtaking 12,000 ft showroom expansion and a 4,000 sq ft office development was created for the company’s 200 plus employees.
2009 saw Fishpools 110th anniversary and a major refurbishment to the majority of the furniture departments. Now complete, the largest quality furniture store in the south east features over 200 room sets showcasing over 200 styles of sofa, 150 ranges of dining tables and chairs, 100 beds and over 75 ranges of bedroom furniture; and if that’s not enough they have thousands of rugs, curtains, mirrors, cookware products and gifts.
At the end of 2010 the whole warehousing operation was moved to a new much larger custom fitted location in Hertford, providing efficient receipt, storage and dispatch of furniture.A complete refurbishment programme for the non furniture departments started with the Cook Shop and Home Accessory Departments in the spring of 2010. The schedule saw the Pictures and Mirrors Gallery completed later that summer and the Bath & Linens Department completed in the summer of 2011. Major projects in 2012 include a re-fit of the Flooring Department and a brand new Natuzzi Gallery.
Fishpools continues to invest in the business with the addition of a seasonal Garden Furniture department and a major refurbishment of the beds department. Recent developments have seen major updates to certain areas of the store including a smart modern look for the Leather Centre and a fabulous new Lighting Department.
Throughout all the years of trading and the vast amount of changes the store has seen, the Fishpool family continues to provide the people of the region with not only furniture and accessories but inspirational lifestyles… Here’s to the next century!
Phone number: 019 9263 6465
Price Range: ££