Bagnalls > About Us > Our Heritage

Our Heritage

Bagnalls has delivered specialist painting services for almost 150 years. Our history in meeting customers’ needs has been supported by national growth, using directly employed and highly skilled painters to ensure the best possible finish.

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The Bagnalls Story So Far…

  • 1875
  • 1916
  • 1922
  • 1925
  • 1928
  • 1942
  • 1975
  • 2000
  • 2004
  • 2005
  • 2016
  • 2021
  • 2023
  • 2025

Our heritage stems back to 1875 when Alfred Bagnall, the company’s founder, was commissioned to paint a railway bridge in Charlestown, Yorkshire.  Alfred Bagnall established a business in Yorkshire, which has remained family owned and managed ever since. The company has now been passed down through five generations of the Bagnall family, with Stephen Bagnall, Alfred’s great, great grandson at the helm, all, whilst remaining a specialist in painting, decorating and industrial protective coatings.

There are numerous notable events in our history, including undertaking camouflage painting work for the War Ministry and painting hospitals in France in WW1. This work continued in WW2 with military camps and airfields also being painted as part of the war effort.

Probably the most legendary building we have ever painted was the original Wembley twin towers stadium (then called the Empire Stadium) in 1922, ready for the Empire Exhibition and the FA Cup final in 1923.

In 1925 the company celebrated its Golden Jubilee – 50 years of trading and in 1928 were the first company in the UK to test a new paint product called Dulux (which stands for Durable and Luxury) which was then used in 1932 to paint the newly built Boots factory in Nottingham. 

In 1975 after several branch openings across the UK we took over Dodsworths Painters in York and celebrated our 100-year anniversary.

In 2000 we celebrated our 125-year anniversary and shortly after John Bagnall retired as Managing Director and Stephen Bagnall was appointed the new Managing Director. 

In 2004 David Hockney, the famous Yorkshire-born artist was exhibiting at the nearby Salts Mill and saw some of our painters working and asked for a Bagnalls’ bib and brace, which we gladly gave him – and he subsequently wore the branded overalls when being photographed by the press.  In the same year, the company invested in a bespoke Painting Academy, in Doncaster to supplement Apprentice Training and in 2022 refurbished it to meet the ongoing needs of our young apprentices.

Bagnalls has won many awards over the years and dedicates each one to the hard work and commitment of all our colleagues.  Awards include in 2005 being the inaugural winner of Painting & Decorating Association (PDA) Special Award for Excellence, in 2016 named Supreme Winner of the FBU awards, achieving Gold membership of The 5% Club in 2021 and being named amongst the Top 100 Apprentice Employers in England in 2022.

As a company, we have remained true to our specialism of painting and decorating, which remains the company’s core trade.  We now offer our expert services across a wide range of market sectors from highly decorative work on historic properties, through to standard commercial painting in schools, hospitals and offices to the more technical and complex requirements of industrial coatings for utility companies and rail franchises.

Our flexible service and continually developing capabilities have built us strong relationships with our customers over five generations of family business. You can feel assured that, by choosing Bagnalls, you will be working with a company that has a commitment to health & safety, the environmentquality and people.

We also look forward to a historic future as we strive “Together Towards 150” in 2025  – when we will celebrate our 150th anniversary.

Latest News

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Our Accreditations

From safe systems of work to our environmental policies, our accreditations assure customers of our accountability and dependability in our work.

See All Accreditations
Health and Safety ISO 45001
Quality ISO 9001
Environmental ISO 14001
EcoVadis Gold
Supply Chain Sustainability School (Gold)
SSIP – Safety Schemes in Procurement
Achilles Utility Vendor Database (UVDB)
Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS)
Dulux Connect
Cyber Essentials
Women in Construction
Living Wage Employer
Family Business United
The 5% Club – Platinum Membership
RoSPA Gold