Arthur Beale Reopens at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard

Arthur Beale, the 500-year-old  iconic London chandlery, has opened  its first shop outside London at the Portsmouth Historic Dockyard, following the closure of its Shaftesbury Avenue shop in the West End last month.

Arthur Beale has, throughout its rich history, had an enviable and diverse list of clients that have included famous explorers like Shackleton, the early Everest expeditions, the Royal Opera House and even Buckingham Palace. As a chandlery that has been in business since the Mary Rose, HMS Victory and HMS Warrior were sailing the seas, it is fitting that its new home should be amongst these seafaring landmarks.

The newly opened chandlery, located within the Portsmouth Historic Dockyard, will serve the next generation of ships and adventurers, matching the aspirations of the dockland’s landlords, Portsmouth Naval Base Property Trust. As guardians and custodians of the estate, the Trust is responsible for the conservation and sustainable restoration of buildings, boats and structures of outstanding architectural and historic interest, repurposed and made accessible for the use and enjoyment of future generations.

The Arthur Beale shop itself was renowned in London for its iconic shop windows and for its incredibly diverse range of products that included anything and everything necessary for a seafaring adventure – a one-stop shop for sailors. The new shop at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard will sell many of the same items including sailing jackets, their own Arthur Beale pullovers, ropes, shackles and everything in between.

The size of the shop (3,000 sq ft) means much of the space will be dedicated to Arthur Beale’s rich history, with memorabilia and archive material from its 500-year history including explorers Shackleton and Gino Watkins. This is the first time that Arthur Beale has displayed any of its archive material to the public.

Image: Julian Civiero

Arthur Beale will sit alongside the world-renowned IBTC Portsmouth, a traditional wooden boatbuilding college, where members of the public can watch students restoring historic vessels, and the Trust’s collection of historically significant small craft of the Royal Navy and the RAF. Customers will be able to request a berth on the pontoon next to the historic collection whilst they stock up on their chandlery needs.

Hugh Taylor, managing director of Arthur Beale, said: “We are very excited to be opening our first shop outside London at this centre of historical naval history and have the chance to finally display our historic memorabilia. We will be selling all our chandlery, sailing products and clothing at the beautiful shop we have here; we are also launching a Click & Collect service by sea, whereby customers can moor at the pontoon at the Dockyard to collect their orders.”

Hannah Prowse, CEO of Portsmouth Naval Base Property Trust, added: “We are delighted to welcome Arthur Beale to the Portsmouth Historic Dockyard. As the landlords of the Dockyard, we believe passionately in supporting heritage businesses and in enhancing the living, breathing, vibrant atmosphere of the Dockyard. After all, where does a heritage Chandlery belong, if not in the heart of our naval heritage?”


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