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Our History

Did you know Midland Chandlers started from humble beginnings in 1979 initially trading from a boatyard shed situated at the Parkgate Lock in Penkridge?

Reco Wall Panels

1976

Peter Jones acquires the Parkgate Lock site in Penkridge. It becomes a boatyard and workshops including a chandlery.

1979

Peter Jones separates the business into Midland Chandlers, run by himself, and Teddesley Boat Company which is run by Peter and Linda Millward. Midland Chandlers goes from strength to strength and the name becomes synonymous with fitting out a narrowboat as the leisure boating industry grows. In the years to come, products would even be produced just for Midland Chandlers, including the Premier back cabin range, which was produced in the Isle of Man.

1985

Another store at Wharf House, Braunston Bottom Lock is opened. This also proves popular as it is the heart of the UK canal network with many builders and hire fleets in the area, same as today.

1993

A new franchise venture is tried by filling shelves at the Ellesmere Port Boat Museum with Midland Chandlers’ stock, which could be purchased from the gift shop within the museum.

1996

Midland Chandlers’ Braunston store moves to its current location opposite the famous and often-photographed ‘double bridge’ junction – Braunston Junction, between the North Oxford and the Grand Union/South Oxford canals.

1998

A third store is opened at Preston Brook, on the Bridgewater Canal in Cheshire, following the success of the venture at Ellesmere Port.

2004

Midland Chandlers celebrates its 25 year anniversary by producing a limited range of celebratory stickers – unfortunately these have been lost in time, if anyone has one please get in touch!

2006

Midland Chandlers is acquired by Arleigh Group, headed by Alastair Thomas. It is merged with Marine Mart, Arleigh’s marine division, and the combined company continues to grow.

2009

Arleigh Group relocates to a new 35,000 sq ft purpose-built warehouse in Nuneaton – Century Park.

2010

A fourth store opens at Mercia Marina in Willington, on the Trent and Mersey Canal near Derby. This was as part of a new marina development which is now a premier tourist destination.

2011

Arleigh Group acquires Nova Leisure, a caravan and motorhome parts supplier to the trade.

2012

Century Park is expanded by another 11,000 sq ft.

2013

Arleigh Group acquires Unipart Leisure and Marine’s motorhome business to add to the growing portfolio.

2015

Another 18,000 sq ft extension is added to Century Park, this time for offices and warehouse space.

2016

Arleigh Group revenue hits 25 million. At this time there was a total of 92 staff employed. Later in the year Arleigh Group is acquired by LKQ.

2017

Arleigh Group acquires ASAP Supplies, a large retail and trade company selling offshore and inland marine items.

2018

Arleigh Group acquires Aquafax, the premier supplier of chandlery and marine items to the trade.

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