0207 928 1816 | info@hennyltd.co.uk

The Poppy Factory was founded in 1922 by Major George Howson MC, a British Army officer in the First World War and winner of the Military Cross in 1917. George Howson’s vision for the newly founded charity was to provide employment opportunities for veterans injured during the First World War.

Major Howson bought land in Richmond, Surrey, and built a factory on the site where in excess of 5 million Remembrance poppies, wreaths and Remembrance symbols are still made for The Royal British Legion’s Poppy Appeal.

100 years of use

Little did Major Howson know that nearly a century later his legacy would be thriving and providing a hugely valued and respected service. Equally, after nearly 100 years of use, the buildings at the Poppy Factory needed major refurbishment to transform the ageing industrial site and provide an inclusive, safe, and effective working environment for Poppy Factory staff and volunteers.

Major redevelopment

At the beginning of January 2020, Henny commenced a major redevelopment at the Petersham Road site. The three existing and separate buildings used for poppy making, warehousing and office space were to be integrated into one combined building of more than 1,400m².

Extensive scope of work

An extensive series of work was required across the site to provide a modern, functional, and usable facility this included:

– groundworks and drainage

– extensive chasing for conduit, floor box installation and core holes for building services

– demolition of a mezzanine floor and removal of internal walls to create a large, double height space

– the construction of a new structural steel framework

– new brickwork throughout, and repairs where necessary to existing brickwork

– installation of factory roof lights and new glazing

– fully fitted kitchen and bathroom facilities

– external paving, blockwork, and tarmac

– raised access flooring and concrete access ramps

– external metal railings

Successful completion

The refurbishment work at the Poppy Factory was successfully concluded on 27th October 2020. Henny ensured that all work across the site was carried out to a high standard of fit and finish. Throughout the period of the refurbishment, the factory remained fully functional and operational.

A new visitor experience

The Poppy Factory refurbishment will enable the creation of a new and improved visitor experience that is more accessible to the local community. The newly refurbished Poppy Factory will be offering a new visitor experience in 2021.

A highly worthy cause

As well as offering employment, the factory offers a support network for veterans helping them to get back on their feet after making the sometime difficult transition from military to civilian life. The factory also houses employability and fundraising staff, overseeing a service which has now helped more than 800 disabled veterans into work across the UK.

Henny were delighted to be involved in such a meaningful project, and fully support this important and exceptional cause.

Have a project in mind? Call us now on 020 7928 1816 or contact us


Value: £880,000
Client: The Poppy Factory
Completion Date: October 2020

poppy factory main room poppy factory plant feature poppy factory hall