Harrison Spinks, Leeds: Yorkshire bed manufacturer sees huge spike in sales following its appearance in BBC Two show Inside the Factory presented by Gregg Wallace
Leeds-based business Harrison Spinks was founded in 1840 and has since grown in popularity.
The bed manufacturer uses material grown from its Yorkshire farm to produce luxury beds in a factory populated with skilled artisans. TV presenter and MasterChef judge Gregg Wallace followed the production process with staff at the business in a rerun episode of Inside the Factory.
The episode aired on September 20, 2023. Since then, managing director at Harrison Spinks, Nick Booth, told The Yorkshire Post that their sales have spiked and website traffic reached capacity.
“The effect was instant, and it’s fair to say that we underestimated the impact the episode would have on our business,” Mr Booth said.
“On the night it first aired, after accruing extra server capacity, our website struggled with the volume of site traffic and our server capacity had to be increased while the episode was airing.
“The following day the phones didn’t stop ringing. Our customer service team received call after call, asking where they could buy a Harrison Spinks bed.
“Interestingly it wasn’t all sales calls and messages, quite a number of people got in touch to express their love and admiration for our business now they understood the skills involved and effort we go to when making our mattresses.
“Even when reruns are on we see an instant spike in website traffic, social media followers and general enquiries into the business.”
The episode originally aired in August 2019.
Mr Booth describes his thoughts on Gregg Wallace and how the filming went.
“Gregg is certainly a character and knew exactly what he needed to do and what he wanted to say for the filming,” he said.
“He wasn’t overly impressed with the food at our staff canteen, but you must remember he is a MasterChef judge.
“Filming went very well, we were well prepared in advance having already shared in detail the mattress creation process with the production team.
“The team were there for three days with additional filming and edits taking place separately. The whole experience was incredibly positive for all colleagues, which I think you can see from the footage.
“There was a real buzz throughout the business with everyone wanting to know how it was going and if they could squeeze into the background.”
There was an overwhelming amount of support for the business following its appearance in the BBC show which revealed behind-the-scenes footage
The episode delved into the reality behind making a bed, which most people don’t understand, and the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive.
“The reaction has been fantastic, it was a brilliant opportunity to showcase how we make our luxury natural mattresses,” Mr Booth said.
“Beds are a big purchase and something you use every day, but very few people know what goes into making one.
“We’re not your everyday mattress manufacturer; a lot of what we do involves making the components that make the mattresses including growing hemp and rearing sheep on our own farm, weaving fabric and making the springs - leading the way in self-sufficient, vertical manufacturing.
“Viewers were shocked to find out the number of people involved in making a mattress as well as the skills that were required. It is largely a handmade process using traditional methods and in this modern world, that is rare.”
The ethos of Harrison Spinks is to make mattresses and beds in the ‘most responsible way’ through handcrafted traditions.
It is their goal to continue doing this into the future. Mr Booth describes what he would like to see in the future for Harrison Spinks.
“We are the UK’s most vertically integrated bed manufacturer meaning we manage more of the production process and raw materials handling than any other in our industry,” he said.
“From growing our own hemp and flax and rearing our own prize-winning sheep for our mattress fillings on our own farm; to drawing our own wire to make our own springs; and weaving our own naturally fire retardant mattress fabric. It means we control quality while creating jobs within the area and reducing transport miles.
“Ensuring we source materials responsibly and repurposing manufacturing clean waste to reduce our reliance on virgin materials is also important.
“100,000 mattresses currently end up in landfill every week and we are committed to playing our part to drastically reduce that through our recyclable components and our waste reduction strategy.
“Supporting the wellbeing of our colleagues and our local community is also really important and we will continue to craft mattresses using natural materials and next-generation technology to help improve comfort and sleep for years to come.”