Originally founded in the 19th century, Timpson provides a diverse range of services not easily found elsewhere such as engraving, key-cutting, jewellery/watch repairs, custom-made sign-making, shoe repairs, dry-cleaning, photo-processing and mobile phone repairs. As well as operating under the name of Timpson, it also has over 100 Snappy Snaps outlets, as well as Max Spielmann concessions, primarily located in supermarkets.
The company is still owned by the Timpson family and has a presence in both the UK and Ireland. With over 5600 employees and 2000 owned shops plus in excess of 115 franchises too, they no longer sell shoes but have continued to enjoy success with their commitment to offering both the customer and staff real quality.
Timpson can be found in both the UK and Ireland, and is instantly recognisable with its burgundy-red sign with white lettering. The Snappy Snaps brand is a much brighter colourway, with the fascia an eye-catching yellow and black with lettering contrasted in white, yellow and black. The Max Spielmann brand is white writing on a blue background.
There are in excess of 1300 outlets throughout the UK and Ireland, with the central administration hub based in Wythenshawe, Manchester. Plymouth has the greatest number of outlets, with Glasgow and Aberdeen also popular locations. The exact Timpson opening times will depend on their establishment’s location, but in general Timpson opening times run from Monday to Saturday at 9am-6pm. They are closed on Sundays. Their opening hours on New Year's Day, Good Friday, Easter Monday, Christmas, Boxing Day and bank holidays are more likely to be universal but it’s still advisable to double-check. Instead of hopping on your favorite search engine and entering “Timpson opening times near me” - use the free and more accurate locator for any of their branches at opening-times.co.uk.
Timpson may be one of the mainstays of the British high street, having been around for more than a century but they have moved with the times. Some of their practices are considered groundbreaking. Some surprising facts about Timpson include:
Timpson provide a wide variety of services which require specialist equipment or skill, many of which are not easily found elsewhere on the high street. While dry-cleaning and key-cutting may be more common, custom-made signs and engraving are very much a niche speciality. Even shoe repairs are not found in many stores, but coming from a background of cobbling, this remains an expertise for Timpson. Other repairs Timpson carries out includes jewellery, watches and mobile phones.
Key-cutting is offered in-store but Timpson also provide a full locksmith service too. This is provided by the arm of the operation known as Timpson Locksmiths, also branded by a burgundy-red and white logo.
Snappy Snaps and Max Spielmann provide photo-processing services, both in stand-alone shops and as concessions within supermarkets. Snappy Snaps is run as a franchise, in direct contrast to the traditional Timpson structure.
The Timpson business began back in 1865 by shoemaker William Timpson and his brother-in-law, later moving into shoe-manufacturing and then repairs. The company went from strength to strength and in 1973, was bought by United Drapery Stores for £28,600,000. However, John Timpson continued to work in a managerial capacity for the business and in 1983 bought it back. This was to spell the beginning of the end for the shoe-retailing arm which went on to be sold to rival Olivers; Timpson focused its effort on shoe-repairs and key-cutting only.
In the following years, the business went on to diversify its services into dry-cleaning, engraving, watch repairs and photo-processing. After buying out the rest of the shareholders in 1993, Timpson went on to acquire many other smaller businesses including The House Nameplate Company, Johnson Cleaners, Klick and Max Spielmann.
The company continues to look for opportunities to expand, while retaining its private structure and owned stores. Its network is now primarily focussed on moving into pods and concessions in supermarkets, rather than opening high street shops.