A very special opportunity for CIM members arose earlier this month together with members from Bristol’s IoD branch - an invitation to visit Bristol Uniforms. 

Manufacturing is an activity which rarely provides an opportunity for members to get to see at first hand how manufacturers develop and grow their businesses and the role that marketing plays in influencing business strategy and plans. CIM and IoD members were given full access to the design, development, manufacturing and sales servicing activities of Bristol Uniforms during a tour of the company's Bristol factory, one of four across Europe.

Close collaboration with its key suppliers of high performance technical fabrics has enabled the company to achieve a dominant position in the UK market.  The company's innovative designs and advanced performance products have been instrumental in helping to build brand leadership in the supply of emergency services personal protective garments, principally for firefighting, in a good number of major world markets. Strong working relationships with some 70 key solus distributorships covering over 110 export markets worldwide have been built on a long term commitment to investment in product innovation and technical excellence.

CIM member, Richard Storey who coordinated the event said; "Feedback from CIM members after the event indicates that seeing manufacturers at work can be quite a revelation in our 21st century services dominated economy, and that we should look at providing further such opportunities in the future."


The business was established in 1801, as a manufacturer of gentleman’s clothing, then it initiated fire protective clothing for Second World War air force pilots and progressed onwards to its current international status as a specialist manufacturer of technical clothing.  Bristol is now a world leader in the design and manufacture of personal protective clothing (PPE) for the emergency services – firefighting, lifesaving and public protection services - some of the most demanding users of protective clothing anywhere in the world.