The Story of Webury
You may have noticed that we've recently given our site an exciting little refresh, as well as our brand logo and colours. With this, we thought it would be a good opportunity to reintroduce ourselves and give some background on who we are, where we've come from and why we are passionate about the countryside and country clothing. Grab a cuppa and have a read of our first blog post (below!) to learn all about our history and the people behind our business.
Early 1980s │ In The Beginning
Our story begins in the early-1980s with our founders, Tim and Trish Kreye.
Tim is an agricultural engineer, firmly entrenched in the rural way of living and working on farms in and around Broadway, Cotswolds. His skills and expertise are a great asset to many a farmer.
Working at an estate agents by day, Trish, can be found spending every other available minute either looking after their two young daughters, Jen and Lu, or fulfilling her passion for horses at the stables.
Mid 1980s │ A Bold Move
The love of the countryside is a prerequisite of passion, shaping the lifestyle ambitions of the young couple and underpinning their decision to pack up their belongings and their adventure-loving daughters in search of their very own version of the good life! We’re sure what comes next is the plot of an epic feel-good family film!
The family embark upon a tour around the UK countryside, visiting an array of beautiful possibilities before stumbling upon a derelict cottage within a smallholding in North Herefordshire. They fall in love with its charm and character immediately, filling it with pets and livestock, love and laughter and the occasional waif and stray. (Yes, that’s right, Tim and Trish have nursed many heartbreaks and existential crises of their friends from their rural sanctuary!)
Late 1980s │ Thinking Big
The family begin to sell top-end designer knitwear to the locality, opening a shop in nearby Bromyard and naming it Country Yarns.
A growing bugbear of both Tim and Trish is the severe lack of availability of warm and practical clothing and footwear that are absolute necessities for their new way of life at the smallholding. As lovers of classic fashion, finding jackets and boots that both look good and stand the test of time is proving to be a challenge, these countryside staples are hard to come by and there are few options to choose from.
Spotting an opportunity to plug the gap in the market for classic style as well as their love of the countryside is what ignites a fire inside of them. What quickly follows is the setting up and rapid growth of a second bustling shop in Ludlow, supplying local people with quality equestrian tack, outdoor clothing and footwear.
The stores are soon considered to be among Herefordshire and Shropshire's best loved high street retailers. The family also regularly exhibit at countryside shows, creating a demand for the products to a broader audience.
|Bromyard Country Yarns||
Ludlow Country Yarns
Mid 1990s │ It’s A Family Affair
Jen and Lu spend their weekends and school holidays helping their parents out in the shops, learning all about the business and becoming experts on the product offering. The whole family’s product knowledge and passion for the business is what really makes the stores flourish and stand out.
Late 1990s │ The Catalogue Era
The family make their products more accessible to a wider audience and launch their very first mail order catalogue, Kreye’s Country Lifestyles. Their vast range of country wear, accessories, gifts and saddlery is now available to order via telephone, this is a big move forward in their drive to create availability and choice of classic country clothing to people outside of their locality and beyond.
Late 1990s │ A Change Would Do You Good – Embracing The Digital Age
Tim & Trish make the decision to build upon what they’ve created with Country Yarns and Kreye’s Country Lifestyles and transition from their physical store presence and catalogues to a purpose-built office with a nearby warehouse, for the opening of their online shop. Offering countryside attire that is not readily available on every high street is a key point of difference for the new website.
1997 certainly feels like the right time to embrace the digital revolution and make the move as the intention to become available to a national audience forms a key part of their vision, as well as their growth and accessibility strategy. Although it is sad saying goodbye to the two stores which brought a decade of happiness and success, this turns out to be a hugely exciting and trailblazing move.
Early 2000s │ Lu Becomes A Fulltime Member Of The Family Business
The year 2000 sees Tim and Trish’s youngest daughter, Lu, joining the business on a fulltime basis. Drawing from her qualification in textiles and degree in Business and Marketing, Lu brings a fresh perspective to the company by driving promotional campaigns and working to make significant developments to the ecommerce site.
Early 2000s │ Webury Is Born
A major rebrand of the business takes place and Kreye’s Country Lifestyles becomes Webury (pronounced ‘Web-ury’ rather than ‘We-bury’!). Tim’s fusion of the words Web + bury reflects both the nature of the business and the family’s heritage.
Web – the ‘Web’ part of the new brand name symbolises the journey of becoming an online retailer and the couple’s passion for innovation and accessibility. Being open to new ideas and technologies is a key part of Tim & Trish’s ethos – it’s what brings people together on a wider scale and makes the world even more of an exciting place to be in.
Bury – the ‘Bury’ element of the Webury brand name is a nod to a love of their locality and roots. Tim and Trish are lucky enough to be surrounded by some of their favourite villages in the form of Bredenbury, Risbury and Thornbury, as well as the popular market town of Ledbury. Adding the ‘Bury’ suffix to their business name creates a strong connection to these neighbouring communities which have played a huge role in shaping the Kreye family and supporting their rural heritage.
The creation of this unique brand name fuses the classic with the contemporary and the love of the culture of the countryside with all the possibilities that digital technology brings.
Peacocks hold a special place in the family’s hearts, a few of them are always roaming the smallholding. The splendour of their beautiful feathers tipped with iridescent eyespots is what fascinates the Kreyes. Representing excellence, distinction and passion, this ornamental bird forms a key part of Webury’s branding and identity.
Mid - late 2000s │ Love & Marriage
This is an extremely busy time for the Kreye family and Webury. The business experiences significant accelerated growth and becomes the UK’s premier stockist for not one but two revered French bootmakers – Aigle and Le Chameau, as well as renowned Australian coat makers, Driza-Bone.
At the same time, Lu further ingrains herself in her rural roots by marrying local Farm Manager, Jason and becoming Mrs Evans!
Early - mid 2010s │ New Business & Babies, Babies, Babies!
A mixture of customer feedback and Lu’s love of design and textiles sparks a new idea for the family. Created specifically for the farming and shooting community, The Shooting Sock Company is launched to house a plethora of amazingly colourful socks with exciting designs.
The bulk of the range is designed by Lu and manufactured to rigorous specifications to ensure warmth and comfort levels are outstanding in each and every single pair. These British made socks are a whirlwind success and the business continues to grow from strength to strength.
Lu and Jason proudly welcome their first-born daughter Phoebe into their family. A couple of years later, three become five and the couple give birth to twin girls, Evie and Maggie. It’s girls galore with the eldest daughter of Tim and Trish, Jen and her husband (also called Jason), giving birth to Eleanor and Isabel during this period too!
Our stand at the Cowdray Gold Cup 2014
2019 │ The Here & Now
|A brand refresh for Webury takes place in November 2019 to reflect our heritage and values, the new classic modern feel of the logo and site aims to tell the story of our roots and reasoning behind our much-loved family business.
Today, our online shop is a country-living style destination where you can find your favourite countryside brands including Le Chameau, Ariat, Joules, Aigle, Baleno, Jacaru, Driza-Bone and Viyella.
We continue to be extremely passionate about the countryside, living the lifestyle and wearing the classic country clothing brands every day.
We take great pride in our premium product range which consists of anything from wellies to a summer hat, a waterproof jacket to a pair of gardening gloves and everything in between. We hold ourselves personally accountable for the ultimate comfort of our customers, ensuring they are kept warm and dry in all winds and weathers. We understand that this level of product confidence is paramount to a lover of the outdoors and have made it our mission to curate an extensive offering that protects against even the hardiest of the elements.
Our Brand Values
We hope you’ve enjoyed reading about the story of our family as much as we’ve enjoyed taking a trip down memory lane and reminiscing! We’d love to hear your thoughts on our journey or if you have an inspiring story of your own to tell then please share it with us by commenting on our Instagram post which introduces this blog.