October 2016 saw us move out of The Old Courthouse, our base for the last 13 years. A lot has happened in that 13 years and Rare Repro have been wonderful hosts. In order to concentrate on doing the best design and creative work, we felt we needed less distractions – it is hard to work on something like a corporate identity programme when the doorbell keeps ringing – so we are now based in a home office in the ‘sticks’…. but still close enough to Hailsham for it to make sense to retain our name.
All businesses have ups and downs, and we are no exception! But we’re still here, having traded uninterrupted for well over 20 years!
A quick bit of history –
Jim Tipler, Josie Tipler (née Church) and Melanie Davies (née Ingham) were college friends studying Graphic Design at Hastings in the 80’s and, after working for agencies, Jim and Melanie teamed up in ’94 to create The Original Tipler Pomfret Design Company. This was from a small office in Tunbridge Wells.
As the phrase goes, we were made “an offer we couldn’t refuse”, and relocated to St Leonards Road in Eastbourne where Josie joined husband, Jim, in the business. After several years operating as an in-house studio for PR agency PRG, as well as looking after our own clients, we decided we wanted a little more freedom and departed on good terms.
So summer 2000 saw us move to the Sussex countryside and take beautiful offices at Bates Green Farm, Arlington, the home of the famous Arlington Bluebell walk. Every May we were treated to the the arrival of thousands of visitors, which was a real buzz. We enlarged the business, taking on more staff.
After a couple of very happy years in Arlington, we upped sticks and moved to The Old Courthouse, Hailsham (via a temporary office in a friend’s dining room!) as tenants of our great friends Rare Repro. We became a Ltd Company, renamed the business Accomplice Ltd. and built a sizeable client base from all over the country. It was a great location and Rare Repro were brilliant landlords. Business was good.
Melanie, expecting her 2nd child, decided to step away from the business, leaving Jim as managing director. In order to stay profitable, a change of direction was needed. We embarked on the next part of our journey, enlisting as a Printing.com franchisee. A risk but it turned out to be a great move, changing our client base from several large eggs in one basket to many smaller eggs in lots of baskets (we never really got the farm out of our system). We took on more staff to cope with the increased workload and enjoyed several years as a successful printing franchise.
But the print industry is painfully fickle, very fast-changing and you have to be on your toes all the time. We adjusted direction again to highlight our design expertise and present ourselves as a one-stop-shop for design, print and marketing services, targeted at local business.
Thus in 2011 Hailsham Creative – Your local image experts – was born.
The concept worked great from the start. We offered small and large businesses the same quality of design and service. Same great print prices and quality. Again though the print industry moved on and printing.com were marketing their online automated service more and more which on the surface contradicted what we were wanting to offer. As a result we relinquished the franchise whilst still retaining the print services, and downsized the business to what it is now – Josie and Jim Tipler, a husband and wife team.
With increased distractions at the Hailsham office, we started working more and more from our home office. Then because of the upheaval caused by the redevelopment of Hailsham High Street, we decided to move as soon as we could. We treated ourselves to a very slight logo refresh and launched our new website.
So that’s it in a nutshell – albeit, quite a large nutshell. You can come and see us, you just need to make an appointment now, or of course we’ll come to you.