Burrells is owned and run by the Ferris family. Edward Ferris is our managing director, but this family business was started by his father, Bill Ferris, over forty years ago.
Bill was born in 1944 and raised in London, eventually becoming a pilot for British Airways in 1969. The high life isn't where he wanted to stay though, luckily for us, and he opened the first SWAG shop in 1974.
Bill Ferris opened his first jewellery shop in Kingston, in 1974. It was called SWAG, and quickly evolved from selling silver and beads to fine jewellery and diamonds. The business expanded to six shops around suburban London and became the leading independent jeweller for the area.
In 2005, Bill handed over the running of the business to his eldest son Edward, with the intention of playing a lot more golf.
Unfortunately, or luckily, depending on your point of view, Bill has managed to stay involved with the running of the company, although he has taken to prioritising his use of sunny days more sensibly lately.
We now own four Burrells shops - Tunbridge Wells, Winchester, Kingston and Staines. Kingston and Staines bring impressive local heritage from their previous incarnation as SWAG shops. With this history, particularly with Kingston being where it all began for the Ferris family, we feel a great duty to continue to offer a truly first-class service.
In the earlier days of SWAG, our slogan was ‘I would really like to be your jeweller.’ Old-fashioned? Perhaps. But still true. We value our customers and our staff very highly and look forward to forging real relationships as we head into the future as Burrells.
"I would really like to be your Jeweller"
In 2016, SWAG bought Burrells in Tunbridge Wells and under new ownership, the business continued to thrive.
The Ferris family opened a second Burrells shop in Winchester in 2017.
SWAG and Burrells stores were managed together for over a year, when, in 2018 the decision was taken to convert the remaining SWAG shops to Burrells stores, with an increased offering in luxury watches and high end jewellery.
Kingston, although the first to open as SWAG, will be the last to change to the Burrells name towards the end of 2018.
Bill Ferris started the business (and continues to interfere). His son Edward is now managing director, and his younger son Tom spent over ten years working in the business. Daughter, Lucy Ferris, works in marketing and has an eye for design, style and is a social media ninja. Edward also has the occasional pleasure of his wife Mim in the office, to work on the website and blog, whilst his cousin Chris tends to the tech side of the online business and auntie Cynthia works in the auditing department.
The extended family has many members who have been with the business for 20+ years and are heavily invested in the success of Burrells and are pretty much part of the furniture around here. You can find out more about them here.