Gerald Culliford History - Part 2

Part Two - Simon Sands, the next generation.

As Gerald Culliford Ltd continued trading over the years growing its customer base and stock holding Gerald Culliford decided to sell his share in the company to Simon Sands.
 
 
Simon’s was working for Westminster Dredging in the Middle East on an Island called Kharg Island Once the world's largest offshore crude oil terminal and the principal sea terminal for Iranian oil, the Kharg Island facilities were put out of commission in the Autumn of 1986. Heavy bombing of the Kharg Island facilities from 1980 through 1988 by the Iraqi Air Force during the Iran–Iraq War all but destroyed most of the terminal facilities.


 Above, Kharg Island where Simon worked during the 1980's before coming back to the UK to work with Gerald Culliford Ltd.


Having had enough of the nearby Iran-Iraq war and looking for something back into the UK, Simon was put in touch with Gerald Culliford via a mutual Dutch friend in the dredging business. Simon returned to the UK in around 1986 to initially work with Gerald and then taking over the company from him in 1993
 
Simon expanded the company early on in his tenure, by taking over the builder’s merchants land next door to 52 lower marsh lane, giving us extra warehousing and double access to the site. This extra area gave us a lot more room to supply tiles, and expand our stocks of slabs.
 

Above, The stock yard prior to taking over the Builder's Merchants yard.

Following some strong years of growth, notably a period where we supplied a lot of material to the Canary Wharf developments, Simon was able to buy out the shareholdings Campolonghi Italia Spa and Carlo Telara Srl had in the business (created during Gerald’s’ time in order to build stocks quickly). This gave Simon total control over the company and gave new direction to purchasing, and the hunt for ever more high-quality materials.


The original static crane (Above) had to be replaced with the the mobile crane (Below) after we expanded the yard.



Simons stewardship of the company continued to drive the quest for high quality marbles, and during this time the granite kitchen market expanded exponentially. His attention to detail, professional manner, with a touch of Naval management style created in Gerald Culliford Ltd the service and quality standards that we embody today.

In 2007 Simon decided to retire and the company was bought by his nephew Oliver Webb and business partner James Semmens who are the current directors of the company, the next installment will follow......