Gift Focus - Jan/Feb 2020 (Issue 117)

176 Style and heritage Gaining the Royal stamp of approval, Price’s Candles has been building its renowned reputation since the 1800s. Kim Gurney, business development executive, tells us more Price’s Candles date back to the 1800s. Please tell us about how it all began and about the people behind the company. William Wilson and Benjamin Lancaster created Edward Price and Co. in 1830, which was later renamed as Price’s Patent Candles in 1849. The company began by developing a new technology to separate coconut fats in order to create stearine wax which was harder, whiter and produced far less odour than the animal fat derived tallow wax, which was commonly used to produce candles at the time. This new wax formula proved successful in the market and its increased popularity made Price’s Candles one of the largest candle manufacturers in the world by the end of the century. Price’s developed its Sherwood candles for the wedding of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert in 1840. Tell us about this and do you still have royal connections today? The creation of the Sherwood candle for Queen Victoria and Prince Albert’s wedding in 1840 was the beginning of a very strong relationship between Price’s Candles and the Royal household, which still endures to this day. We’ve proudly held the Royal warrant to Her Majesty the Queen since 1850 and still continue to supply our Sherwood candles for any royal events and stately engagements. What products did you start selling and how has your product range evolved? We started out with the creation of our iconic Sherwood candles, which founded our links to the Royal household. Further down the line in 1849 Price’s acquired a London nightlight company, which was the beginning of the manufacturing of Price’s Nightlight (one of our most recognised products in the market today). This was closely followed by the development of paraffin wax by utilising imported crude petroleum from Burma, which was newly discovered at the time. Paraffin wax was found to have a higher melting point than other candle waxes, making it technically the best wax for candle production and to this date, it’s still widely used in candle manufacturing. All these advancements in wax production have helped Price’s evolve within the candle industry. The invention of electricity was one of the biggest changes that the candle industry had to face, turning what was once an essential item in every home for lighting purposes to what we now mainly know and love as a fragranced luxury element. Where is Price’s Candles based and how is this important? Price’s Candles is currently based in a large industrial estate in Bedford providing great logistical links across the UK. Our large warehouse allows us the space to maintain a strong stock holding