1760 – 1840: 1st Industrial Revolution. 1845: The SS Great Britain crossed the Atlantic in a record 14 days. 1847: Charlotte Bronte’s “Jane Eyre” was published. 1848: Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels published “The Communist Manifesto”. 1848: W.G. Grace, British cricket player, was born in Bristol. 1854-56: The Crimean War. 1860: Abraham Lincoln was elected US president & Charles Dickens wrote his novel “Great Expectations”.
1844: Bristol printing and packaging company ES Robinson founded by Elisha Smith Robinson. 1848: Alfred Robinson joins company now ES & A Robinson. 1860: Print expanded to 11 lithographic presses and 2 lithographic machines worked by steam.
1871 – 1914: 2nd Industrial Revolution. 1873: Colour photography was devised & Levi Strauss began marketing blue jeans with copper rivets. 1876: Alexander Graham Bell made what was, in effect, the first telephone call. Tchaikovsky completed “Swan Lake”. 1878: Electricity became available for household usage. 1886: John Pemberton invented Coca-Cola.
Circa 1870 ES & A Robinson produces the company’s 1st colour Tradesman’s Advertising Calendar (Almanack). By 1876, 25 different calendars were being printed some achieving sales of 200,000 copies.
1878: ES & A Robinson producing Stationery, bookbinding, ledgers, day-books etc. By 1887 Calendar, Colour Poster and Show Card production had outgrown the factory and was moved to new premises in Bedminster.
1890: The Cardboard box is invented. 1898: H G Wells publishes “War of the Worlds”. 1901: Queen Victoria dies. 1903: The first flight by the Wright brothers. 1908: Henry Ford’s 1st Model-T. 1906: Will Keith Kellogg founded the W.K. Kellogg Company. 1912: The Titanic sinks after hitting an iceberg. 1914-1919: World War I.
1892: Cardboard Box printing established in Bedminster. Thomas King, formerly Office Manager becomes a Director of E S & A Robinson Ltd and later Managing Director. It was he who developed a strong relationship with the great tobacco firms of Bristol and Cigarette Cards were conceived. In 1919 a large Photo-Litho plant was installed in Bedminster and later extended to include Photogravure.
The Vietnam War, hippies, drugs, protests, and rock and roll characterised the 1960’s. 1963; President John F. Kennedy was assassinated, the Beatles make it in the States & Dr. Martin Luther King made his “I Have a Dream” speech. 1965: the first miniskirts appeared. 1966: England wins the world cup & Star Trek is 1st aired on the TV.
1966: John Dickinson Stationery Ltd merged with ES & A Robinson of Bristol Ltd to form the Dickinson Robinson Group (DRG) creating one of the world’s largest stationery and packaging companies which included The Lion Brand, Basildon Bond and Sellotape.
1981: The discovery of AIDS. 1982: Argentina invades the Falkland Islands. 1988: Pan AM flight 103 shot down over Lockerbie. 1989: The Berlin Wall falls. 1990: The Internet invented. 1994: Nelson Mandela elected President of South Africa. 2004: Facebook launched.
1981: The Advertising Calendars & Diary business was bought from DRG as part of a management buy out and becomes Calendars & Diaries of Bristol Ltd.
1986: Sue Tugman joins Calendars & Diaries of Bristol Ltd as Marketing Manager, becoming a Director and shareholder the following year.
1993: Mercurius Groep Bv acquires Calendars & Diaries of Bristol Ltd, now trading as Brunel Promotions, and Sue Tugman appointed Managing Director.
2004: Sue Tugman sells all her shareholding to Mercurius Groep Bv. but continues as Managing Director.
2009: Barack Obama becomes president of the USA. 2010: Apple debuts the iPad. 2011: Japan is devastated by a 9.0 magnitude earthquake and tsunami.
2005: Sue Tugman sets up Brunel Holdings (Bristol) Ltd, and buys Calendars & Diaries of Bristol Ltd from Mercurius in 2006, acquiring Starline (Sales) Ltd later in the same year.
2009: Brunel Holdings (Bristol) Ltd buys 50% share of Spilt Ink Studio. Develops a B2C Web site and re-brands as funkypigeon.com. 2010: Funkypigeon.com sold to W.H.Smith.
2011: Brunel Holdings (Bristol) Ltd buys Lockwoods Promotional Products taking its share of the UK advertising calendar market to circa 40%.
2014: BrunelPrint, buys a Roland XR 640 digital wide format printer; a Scodix S75 “raised” ink printer, a digital laser motioncutter and a state of the art Heidelberg XL75-5 Litho press. This combined with 3 variable data, HP Indigo digital presses, positions the company at the forefront of commercial print in the UK.