Higgs leads historic sale for Tudor Crystal

David Ellis and Barbara Beadman watch glass blower Lyn Ross

A team from legal firm Higgs & Sons has advised on the sale of one of the Black Country’s oldest firms.

Tudor Crystal Design Ltd and Plowden & Thompson Ltd (P&T) have been sold to one of their largest customers, American owned ET Enterprises Ltd, a manufacturer of photomultipliers.

Tudor and P&T are based in the New Dial Glass Works, built in 1788, on the historic Glass Mile. Each company can trace its origins back to the 18th century and the many famous glass makers such as Thomas Webb.

The directors of Tudor & P&T, Richard and Barbara Beadman, have developed glassmaking on this site to include traditional stemware, giftware, decorative lead crystal and coloured glass. Alongside this they have developed innovative world-class glass for research work including the Innovation Award-winning night vision compatible glass. The historic site continues to develop new glasses, working methods and skills in order to retain competitiveness in the 21st century.

David Ellis from Higgs & Sons led the team dealing with the sale. He said: “Higgs & Sons has been practising law in the Black Country for over 130 years and is proud to have been involved in this sale. It makes a change to deal with a local business that has been in existence even longer than we have and is very much a part of the local heritage. This was a smashing company to deal with and we are very pleased to have been able to assist in achieving a successful sale.”

Richard and Barbara Beadman will remain involved in the business for the immediate future while the buyer brings in additional production lines and looks to recruit further management and staff. Barbara Beadman, is also chairman of The Friends of Broadfield House Glass Museum, a Liveryman of The Worshipful Company of Glass Sellers and a director of British Glass.

“It was essential to have the clear advice provided by David and his team, as this was not an easy decision to take, but it will ensure the future of glass making here at the Dial,” explains Barbara.

“It was of great benefit to have Higgs & Sons there to lead us through the intricacies involved in a business sale.”

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