Skip to main content

History

1856

1856

The brand is founded by 21-year old Thomas Burberry.

1879

Thomas Burberry invents gabardine - the breathable, weatherproof and hardwearing fabric.

1888

Burberry patented gabardine.

1879

1891

Burberry moves into the first London store at 30 Haymarket.

 

1893

Norwegian polar explorer, zoologist and later recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize, Dr Fritjof Nansen was the first recorded polar explorer to take Burberry gabardine to the poles when he set sail bound for the Arctic Circle in 1893

1891
1893
1897

1897

​Explorer Major F.G. Jackson, famed for mapping parts of the Arctic Circle,
wears Burberry gabardine when undertaking an expedition
to Franz Josef Land.

 

1901

c.1901

The Equestrian Knight logo appears for the first time accompanied by the Latin word 'Prorsum' meaning 'forwards'.

1909

​Opening of the Burberry store in Paris at 8 Boulevard Malesherbes.

1909

1910

​Celebrated aviator Claude Grahame-White wears Burberry gabardine. He is the first person to fly between London and Manchester in less than 24 hours.

1910
1911

1911

Norwegian Explorer Roald Amundsen and his team became the first people to reach the South Pole with a Burberry gabardine tent and clothing.

1912

 

1912

British Explorer Captain Robert Falcon Scott reaches the South Pole wearing Burberry clothing and equipped with a Burberry tent. Tragically he and his team died on the return journey.

 

The Tielocken coat is patented. The predecessor to the trench coat, it proves popular among officers during WWI. The coat closes with a single strap and buckle fastening and only features a button at the collar.

1913

​Burberry moves to a larger London premises in Haymarket, designed by the Architect Walter Cave.

 

1913
1914-17
1914-18

1914 - 1918

​ British Explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton wears Burberry
gabardine for an expedition to Antarctica.

 

During the First World War, Burberry provided apparel and equipment to the Armed Forces. Designed for the military, each unmistakeable detail of the Burberry trench coat was introduced to serve a purpose.

1914-1918
1919

1919

HM King George V officially appointed Burberry a Royal Warrant as Tailors.

 

Captain John Alcock and Lieutenant Arthur Whitten Brown wore Burberry aviator suits to pilot their plane in an exposed cockpit, and complete the first non-stop transatlantic flight in 72 hours. Photo courtesy of Vickers.

1920

Burberry became a publicly quoted company for the first time.

1920
1920
1920

1920's

​The Burberry check, now registered as a trademark, was introduced as a lining to the trench coat.

 

 

1937

Burberry sponsored a record breaking flight from Croydon to Cape Town in an aeroplane called 'The Burberry'. Both aviators Flying Officer Arthur Clouston and Betty Kirby-Green wore Burberry.

1937
1940

1940's

During the Second World War, Burberry supplied the British Army with a range of military apparel and accessories, including the trench coat. Burberry also catered for various other divisions of the British Armed Forces, including the Royal Air Force (RAF), the Royal Navy, the Royal Pioneer Corps, the Officer Cadet Training Unit (OCTU), and the Auxiliary Territorial Service (ATS) - including the women’s division.

Despite the austere conditions posed by war, Burberry continued to make civilian clothing during the 1940's including weatherproofs, overcoats and suits for both men and women. The brand adapted the product category to war time to include women’s siren suits, which were designed to be worn in an air-raid.

1955

HM Queen Elizabeth II grants Burberry a Royal Warrant as a Weatherproofer.

Burberry was acquired by UK retailing group Great Universal Stores (GUS).

 

1964

Burberry was the official outerwear supplier for the British women’s Olympic team who participated in the Tokyo Olympics.

 

1964
1999

1990

Burberry is granted a Royal Warrant by HRH The Prince of Wales as an Outfitter.

 

1999

Change of Company name from Burberry's to Burberry.

 

2000

Burberry opens the first store on Bond Street, London, reflecting the brand's status as an iconic, global luxury brand.

2001

​ Christopher Bailey is appointed Design Director.

 

2002

Burberry is listed on the London Stock Exchange in July following an initial public offering.

 

2004

Burberry launches the first transactional website in the United States.

 

2005

Demerger from GUS plc is completed, the company’s former majority shareholder.

2001

2006

The UK transactional website launches.

2008

2008

Burberry forms a joint venture to establish Burberry Middle East (BME) headquartered in Dubai.

The Burberry Foundation launches, a philanthropic organisation dedicated to helping young people realise their dreams and potential through the power of their creativity. 1% of group profit before tax is donated to charitable causes, the majority to the Burberry Foundation.

2009

The Womenswear Spring/Summer 2010 runway show relocates to London from Milan, marking the 25th anniversary of London Fashion Week. The show is live-streamed allowing consumers globally to share the full experience of a Burberry fashion show for the first time.

2009
2010

2010

Burberry is the first luxury brand to join the Ethical Trading Initiative.

Burberry forms a joint venture in India with Genesis Colors.

2011

Burberry forms a joint venture in Saudi Arabia with Fawaz Abdulaziz Alhokair & Co, transferring five stores from franchise operation.

Burberry.com launched. It is now available in 44 countries, in 11 different languages and is optimised for iPad, iPhone and other mobile devices.

2012

2012

Opening of 121 Regent Street, London, our most digitally-advanced brand experience, bringing every aspect of burberry.com to life in a physical environment for the first time.

2013

The Prorsum Menswear Spring/Summer 2014 show returns to London from Milan, showing as part of London Collections: Men.

2016

2015

Unification of the three Prorsum, London and Brit collections into one single Burberry label.

Opening of the Regent Street flagship store café, Thomas's.

 

2016

Retail calendar changes from four runway shows to two, combining men's and women’s shows. The collections are available to purchase in stores and online immediately following the show.

 

2017

Julie Brown appointed Cheif Operating and Financial Officer. 

Marco Gobbetti appointed Chief Executive Officer.