Kite firm celebrates centenary

Brookites makes two of UK’s top ten models, records increased sales.
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The UK’s oldest kit manufacturer has been included in the Independent newspaper’s list of Top Ten Best Kites with its Air Bear and Aztec Colour-A-Kite designs.

The Air Bear design features a panda in goggles, which can parachute from the kite. The Aztec Colour-A-Kite allows the user to colour it in.

Founded in 1907 by brother Tommy and alter Brooke, the firm is now run by Nick and Mandy Harrison from a former mill near Okehampton, Dartmoor. The couple is using the theme of flight to celebrate the occasion.

Harrison, the firm's sales director said: “At the start of the year, we had no idea if anyone would be interested in the fact that we can trace the business’ history back to Edwardian times”.

The firm’s centenary publication tells how radio pioneer Marconi used a Brookite kite to help with the first transatlantic radio message in 1910 and how a kite was also used to capture the notorious wife murderer Dr. Crippen.

“We went ahead because we thought it an appropriate vehicle to thank our loyal customers and to have a bit of fun in researching the past and sorting our fairly extensive archives,” she said.

“We have been rewarded by increased sales this year and a tremendous amount of goodwill from customers both new and established. We are truly delighted especially as some of our own designs have been nationally recognised”.

The firm sells traditional models along with a wide range of power and sporting kites used in the booming, surfing and skate-boarding cultures.

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