Unique Stoke Newington globe-makers recognised by Queen's award
- Credit: Owen Harvey
An independent artisan globe company in Stoke Newington was awarded the Queen's Award For Export for the second time in three years.
The achievement recognises Bellerby & Co Globemakers continued success in international sales.
The company, set up by Peter Bellerby in 2008, specialises in the traditional art of handcrafting bespoke world globes. It ships its products to every corner of the world.
The are only a handful of globe-makers in the world today and the Stoke Newington company is one of the few training apprentices to create traditional and high-quality globes using original designs rather than replicas.
Founder Peter said: "Globe-making itself started as a hobby. I wanted to find a gift for my fathers upcoming 80th birthday. I found the options were either poor replicas or priceless antiques.
"It seemed the art of traditional globe-making was gone."
So Peter decided to make his own, one for his father and another for himself.
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He added: "After two years of teaching myself and hundreds of globes that were not good enough and, after nearly bankrupting myself a business was born.
He taught himself the craft by trial and error as "there is no manual" to make globes.
The crafter says the challenges for making each hand-painted globe are "huge" as he and team work precisely with "incredibly fragile paper" which is wet and stretched.
And, as all the designs are made to order, pieces can take months or even years to complete.
Peter added: "Think of the difference between a hand painted work or art of something printed off the computer.
"Something made by hand - something that passes through at least five sets of hands is not only one of a kind but a huge amount of love, thought and care has gone in to it."
Some of the most unusual commissions created include a customer proposing with a globe instead of a ring, a band which traced 40 years of world tours and an ice age globe for a geologist.
Peter said: "We’ve had commissions from heads of state, secretive organisations, Hollywood actors, all sorts - so it’s been fun."