Ercol was founded as Furniture Industries in 1920 by Lucian R Ercolani, furniture designer and maker as well as employee of Frederick Parker (now Parker Knoll) and Gommes (which later became G-Plan) in the heartland of English furniture making, High Wycombe. His goal was to design and produce beautiful, high-quality and honest furniture, made with pride by the finest trained craftsmen using time-honoured cabinet and upholstery skills.
In 1920, Ercolani perfected the technique of steam-bending wood. In 1932 it took over well-known Chairmaker Skulls (for which the chair-making department is still named). By 1944 it had been contracted by the Board of Trade for 100,000 low-cost Windsor chairs. In the 1940s Ercol perfected the steam bending of wood in large quantities, enabling them to mass produce chairs. With this method they were able to make a chair every twenty seconds. Their mass-produced furniture found a ready market in post-war Britain.
Ercol continues to value innovation, design and craftsmanship. Design for comfort, design for function, and design for beauty. Ercol has had a number of its products attain with the Design Guild Mark, awarded on behalf of the Furniture Makers' Company. 2020 sees the 100th anniversary of ercol furniture who now make an ‘Originals’ range which harks back to the height of Ercol popularity. The business remains family owned.
1954 the Pebble Nest of Tables came to the market.
1956 the Loveseat, Butterfly Chair, Stacking Chair and Studio Couch were introduced.
1957 the Evergreen range was added.
1980 the addition of the Jubilee range.
1989 saw the move to using ash and American elm as a result of Dutch Elm disease.
1993 included the Rensaissance range.
2002 the factory moved from High Wycombe to Prince’s Risborough and the Originals range was born.
2014 the Romana Collection was introduced.