Words by Rebecca Hawkey
Building the heart of the home to last generation after generation.
When I was a child, the concept of a solid wood kitchen was hard to come by. Of course, there were companies that would offer such products, but the homes we lived in had been around for generations, resolute in their ways, from worn paisley carpets to white laminate countertops, contrasted by the glass-fronted light oak cabinets fit to house dark brown glass tea cups. It was a confusing time for homeowners looking to refresh their abode. The tools of the trade, the trade being hand-crafted solid wood kitchens, were few and far between, and off-the-shelf options, rather than bespoke cabinetry, were taking centre stage. For over 30 years, George Robinson has been going against the grain when it comes to such trends, slowly but surely bringing back the craft, the elegance and the durability that comes with a solid-wood bespoke kitchen.
Carpentry is a craft, a technique that has been handed down over the years, and in George’s case through the generations, for it was his great-grandfather (who was also called George Robinson) whose master carpentry skills inspired this career path. As George says: “He made many of his own tools; they are as good now as they were a hundred years ago.” Such sentiments speak volumes for the skills required in this trade, skills that were originally gained through practical experience, guided by those that came before, and not from textbooks.
George Robinson Kitchens was established 21 years ago, when the idea was born to create his own business and provide the local community with kitchens that were built to last; longevity being a common theme, from those handmade tools that were passed down, to the very kitchens themselves, an inheritance to future generations. Not to mention the highly skilled, expert team of craftsmen that George works with, craftsmen who have been with George since the beginning, his first employees, defining the true meaning of longevity.
With this in mind, sustainability and resources is a discussion that needs to be had, for when you design and build such vast elements of the home you can’t do so without sourcing the materials from somewhere. George understands this, going on to say that: “We use wood from sustainable forests as much as we can, and opt for the most energy-efficient appliances. By creating durable kitchens and furniture that is built to last, I feel that I am able to make a tangible difference that I feel truly proud of.” Choosing a robust product made from solid timber is likely to last decades, making it a more sustainable choice for the environment than less durable alternatives.
George’s completely bespoke service is, nowadays, few and far between. He prides himself on this, as he truly believes that understanding the needs of the client, and the space they have available, is paramount to a successful job. Why waste time building something that is so fundamental to the home, and the happiness of its occupants, if every detail isn’t meticulously considered and crafted with expert hands?
When George isn’t in the workshop, he’s at his allotment, a man of the earth in more ways than one: “I love to see these vegetables develop from seedlings to the fully grown produce I enjoy cooking.” This process of germination infuses his home life, as well as his work life, for it’s this journey that keeps him inspired when working on new projects: “When I look at a kitchen space and start to plan its design, I have a sense of excitement that will develop, until my colleagues and I can stand back from a finished kitchen and enjoy the satisfaction of a job well done.”
It is clear that George and his dedicated team still get a great sense of achievement from their work, remarkable after three decades in the industry. Their steadfast commitment to the craft and the stunning products they create is evident given that the majority of their business is through word of mouth, culminating in clients that have been told of the high-quality service George Robinson Kitchens provides. Previous clients frequently return to George Robinson for his design services once again, having moved house or purchased a second home, desiring another George Robinson Kitchen or bespoke piece of furniture to adorn their new abode. The community of continued supporters creates a family atmosphere amongst clients old and new, which saturates this team with the utmost gratitude and respect for their line of work.
In addition to designing and manufacturing bespoke kitchens, George also works on a broad range of bespoke furniture, which is made to the same high standards using traditional methods. From bookcases and bed frames, to dining tables and desks, the team enjoy working on all kinds of bespoke furniture projects, which offer a great opportunity to get creative. By working with the team at George Robinson Kitchens, you have the chance to completely refresh your home with fittings that are holistic throughout. All are built to the highest standards, a pledge by George and his team, which undoubtedly demonstrates both the passion and the commitment that George and his colleagues bring to their work, every time. As happy customers, Heather and Chris share: “We bought our first from George Robinson Kitchens around 15 years ago, the second eight years ago, and now we’re onto our third, each one making the most of the space, for beauty and functionality. We keep coming back for George’s design expertise, his team’s craftsmanship, and of course the absolute quality of the end result.”
Here in Cornwall we are no stranger to the concept of community, to taking care of our neighbours and doing what we can to welcome anyone and everyone with a smile. This is a trait that George and his team have in spades, so is it any wonder that their business goes from strength to strength?