A photograph of the Stannah founders

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Keeping people moving since 1867

2017 is a year of celebration for Stannah. This year will mark 150 years since Joseph Stannah founded the business back in 1867, providing cranes and hoists to make things easier in the docks of London. A lot has happened since then – wars, financial crises, the invention of the car, the telephone, space travel – yet some things, like the need to get goods and people from one floor to another and the Stannah family commitment to Joseph’s values of quality and integrity, have not changed.

It’s not always been a smooth ride for the company though, Leslie Stannah had to rebuild the company from scratch after the Second World War and the early 60s saw the business in a precarious position but it was ably rescued by the young Brian and Alan Stannah, who have since built the business in to the household name it is today.

Scroll down to take a tour through our history.

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1867

Joseph Stannah established the company in London, making hoists and cranes for the dockyards before embarking on passenger lifts.

Joseph Stannah Rules of Life are still used today.

Stannah Facts…

1881
Stannah was regularly advertising in The Times for cranes, lifts, patent pendulum donkey pumps and a southward high-speed 26hp engine
1897
Joseph Stannah wrote his Rules of Life, it was a kind of ten commandments for running a happy life and a successful business

Meanwhile…

1867
Canada became a country
1871
The Royal Albert Hall was opened by Queen Victoria
1876
The first telephone was invented by Alexander Graham Bell and Thomas Watson.
1879
The lightbulb was invented by Thomas Edison
1888
The Eiffel Tower is built
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1900

Joseph’s son Albert Stannah developed the company’s designs and marketing operation.

Stannah Facts…

1900
Joseph Stannah moved the business from 20 Southwark Bridge Road to nearby Skin Market Place, Bankside.

Meanwhile…

1901
The vacuum cleaner is invented by Hubert Booth.
1905
Einstein writes the Theory of Relativity.
1914
First World War.
1922
The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) was established

1925

Albert’s son Leslie Stannah develops his technical knowledge in America before returning to work with other lift manufacturers. Leslie is awarded the King’s Commendation for courage in the face of the enemy becoming Lt Commander L Stannah by the end of the war. The family factory receives a direct hit by a German bomber, putting operations on hold.

Leslie returned to London, rebuilt the factory with the government’s help and manufactured the first post-war lifts and exports to Palestine and Ceylon.

Stannah Facts…

1945
When Leslie (Pop) Stannah rebuilt the family business with around £400. There was no factory left, no plant, no designs, no source of components and no staff
1949
Stannah hired their first apprentice.
1950
There were around 20 people working in the business, today there are over 1700.

Meanwhile…

1926
Queen Elizabeth II is born on April 21st
1939-45
Second World War.
1943
Alan Turing develops the code-breaking machine Colossus.
1957
Sputnik I and II are launches by the Russians.

1965

Leslie’s sons Alan and Brian Stannah introduce dumbwaiter and passenger lifts to the product portfolio and open the first service branch.

Stannah Facts…

1974
Stannah Microlifts was started - marketing dumbwaiter lifts

Meanwhile…

1967
The first successful heart transplant
1969
Neil Armstrong sets foot on the moon.

1975

Stannah manufactures its first stairlift and begins exporting the range in 1979.

Meanwhile…

1975
Steven Sasson invented the digital camera
1976
The Concorde had its first commercial flight, from London to Bahrain
1977
The MRI machine was invented
1979
Sony introduced the Walkman

1985

Stannah Stairlifts achieves global market leadership and the 1987 Queen’s Award for Export Achievement.

Meanwhile…

1986
The disposable camera was invented.
1987
DNA first used to convict criminals
1990
The World Wide Web invented by Tim Berners-Lee.

1990

Stannah Stairlifts opens subsidiaries in the USA and Holland and produces its 100,000th stairlift. The division also wins its second Queen’s Award for Export Achievement.

Stannah Facts…

1993
Stannah started manufacturing their first platform lift in line with the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) coming into force

Meanwhile…

1994
The opening of the Channel Tunnel.
1995
First successful air-balloon ride over the pacific ocean.
1998
Titanic becomes the most successful movie ever.
1999
The Blackberry phone was released

2000

The company unveils its groundbreaking MRC passenger lift, one of the world’s first hydraulic machine-roomless lifts.

Meanwhile…

2000
The world’s first mass produced hybrid electric vehicle – The Toyota Prius
2001
Wikipedia, the free online encyclopedia, was launched

2002

The company launches its new access platform lifts and purchases stairlift distributors in France and Belgium.

Meanwhile…

2002
Camera phones were introduced to consumers
2003
The Mars Exploration Rover was launched
2004
Facebook launches.

2006

The company opens a new £5m Stannah Stairlift factory in Tyneside.

Meanwhile…

2007
Global economic downturn begins.
2008
President Obama became the 44th president of the United States

2009

Brian's son Jon Stannah introduces escalators and moving walkways to their product portfolio and their lift service division wins the contract to maintain all Network Rail lifts in the UK.

Meanwhile…

2009
Water is discovered on the moon.
2010
Apple launches the iPad tablet

2012

Stannah welcomes HRH the Prince of Wales to Stannah on the occasion of the manufacture of their 500,000th stairlift production.

Meanwhile…

2012
London hosts the 20th Olympic Games.

2013

The company installs lifts and escalators into some major infrastructure projects: King’s Cross, Paddington, London Bridge, Reading, Nottingham and many more station upgrades. Moving walkways are installed in many major supermarkets nationwide. Loading systems for distribution centres are added to their lift services.

Stannah Facts…

2014
20,000 microlifts are sold by Stannah

Meanwhile…

2013
Prince George was born on 22d July, making him third in line to the British throne

2015

A year of milestones for Stannah as we celebrated 20,000 passenger and platform lifts being sold and 40 years of Stairlifts.

Stannah Facts…

2015
Stannah partners with The Silverline Helpline to mark the 40th anniversary of the introduction of its stairlifts.
2016
Stannah introduces Loading Systems into the product range.

Meanwhile…

2015
Queen Elizabeth becomes the longest reigning monarch in British history.
2016
Mother Theresa was recognized by Pope Francis as a Saint

2017

The company celebrates its 150th anniversary

Stannah has 11 branches nationwide

Stannah has operations across the globe

Stannah has installed over 45,000 commercial lift products

Stannah now has lifts in major train stations across the UK

Stannah has installed over 600,000 stairlifts

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