Behind the brand: Bremont Watch Company
Bremont has one of the most fascinating origin stories of any watch manufacturer out there today.
In March of 1995, Nick English, one of Bremont’s co-founders, and his father – Dr Euan English - were flying a vintage aircraft in an air show. Suddenly, the plane in front of theirs suffered a misfire, and in an attempt to get clear their aircraft went into a spin and crashed.
Unfortunately, Dr. Euan English was killed and Nick – then 23-years-old – almost died as well.
After suffering the loss of his father, Nick and his brother Giles took stock of their lives and decided to do something radically different. Having been brought up by their father to love all things mechanical, the pair decided to take over their father’s company of restoring historical aircraft full time. But after that, they moved into watches. And the Bremont Watch Company was born.
Originally, the pair set up their headquarters in Switzerland. It was there they decided to study the Swiss method of watchmaking, and to source watch components that were not yet available in Britain.
But the pair – with their engineering backgrounds – noticed something the Swiss did not: that watches should embody a sense of adventure, and a story beyond that of merely telling the time.
Over the next five years, the brothers prototyped and tested their first designs in some of the harshest conditions on earth. Their watches were tested “beyond endurance” you might say, which would eventually become the company’s motto.
While they started incredibly small, Bremont has quickly become a successful brand, especially in the field of rugged tool watches. Not only that, but the company is now proudly positioned as Britain’s premier watchmaker.
It’s watches have been adopted by would-be and professional adventurers alike, from pilots in the Royal Air Force to the likes of Prince Harry who wore one on his 13-day expedition to the South Pole. The brand has also partnered up with fellow British manufacturers, including the likes of Jaguar, and today makes watches for the likes of Boeing and Regatta Oracle Team USA.
Today it makes a variety of watches, but each one is crafted in a specialist workshop in the UK. The new 2018 collection sticks to what Bremont does well, with a mixture of sporty tool watches from the worlds of aircraft and motorsports, along with a few more classically-inspired timepieces.
A few of my favourite pieces from this year is the Bremont U-2/51 jet – which is a stealthy black pilot’s watch – along with the Bremont Endurance Limited Edition – which is C O S C certified and tested in the colds of the Antarctic.
As per usual, there is lots to love about the entire 2018 collection. And it’s good to see that far from relying on its origin story – as miraculous as it is – Bremont has decided to base its future on its watchmaking mastery, instead.