About us

Plankbridge is undoubtedly the pioneer of the shepherd’s hut revival. Founder Richard Lee tells us about how it all began…

Richard Lee

“My initial training at John Makepeace’s Hooke Park College, followed by brilliant start-up business help from the Prince’s Youth Business Trust in the mid-90’s, proved invaluable in aiding me and Jane to set up Plankbridge in the year 2000.  We were inspired by an old original Victorian shepherd’s hut which we would pass when walking the dogs. I was always keen to find a familiar, heritage design that I could make and deliver complete, but still configure to customer’s requirements to modern day specifications.

Plankbridge grew gradually, hut by hut. I still made bespoke furniture and kitchens as I had done in previous years but slowly the shepherd’s huts became the mainstay. Jane and I would welcome customers to the workshop at home where we would sit at the kitchen table, the original Plankbridge HQ, and sketch ideas. We often enjoyed homemade soup whilst we chatted and finalised the details.  Building a business has been no mean feat and steering the ship is a thrill.

The workshop is now based at a nearby farm in a 15,000 square foot workshop with a team of around 40.  It still very much a family business, with daughter Hannah involved in the marketing side and it’s a wonderful close knit team.”

About The Team

Plankbridge is made up of a skilled and enthusiastic team of around 40 hutmakers, CAD designers, joiners, furniture makers, paint finishers and office team.  The furniture makers all have experience making high end designs for discerning worldwide customers. True to the Arts and Crafts approach of John Ruskin and William Morris, Plankbridge takes pride in nurturing apprentices up to hutmaker level, and enjoys keeping heritage craft skills alive. The team work with their hands to make beautiful and useful huts of heirloom quality. 

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