Wakefield retailer Peter Jones says family, hard work and entrepreneurship are the keys to his company’s 50 successful years in business.
Peter Jones China opened in Wood Street in 1964 and now employs more than 100 staff at 11 stores across Yorkshire as well as a mail order and online business.
The firm will be celebrating its half century with a special free event at Wakefield’s Cedar Court Hotel this weekend.
Mr Jones recalls his early days as an ambitious 21-year-old entrepreneur with fondness. He said: “It was hard work but exciting. We managed to open accounts with the country’s leading brands such as Wedgwood, Waterford, Denby and Royal Crown Derby.
“We knew that our customers came to us ‘for something special’ and so that became our motto.
“We make sure that every new product we introduce has to be considered something special.”
The family-run business expanded, but the turning point came in 1977 when a demand for commemorative products to celebrate the Queen’s Silver Jubilee boosted the company’s fledgling mail order business.
Mr Jones said: “Within a matter of months we had a burgeoning customer base, not just in the UK but throughout the world, dedicated to collecting prestige royal commemoratives.”
The firm is now recognised as one of the leading royal commemorative specialists.
Mr Jones says he’s proud of his success and his role at the heart of the Wakefield business community.
He said: “I’ve loved every minute. I’ve been very lucky to be involved in such a marvellous business . I would definitely go through it all again.
“I am tremendously excited about meeting customers both old and new at our special collectors weekend event.”
The event, which will showcase the industry’s top collectable brands, is open to the public and will feature free gifts, prize draws, competitions and a children’s treasure hunt.
It is open from 11am-4pm on Saturday and 10.30am-4pm on Sunday.