Above: Some of the partners and employees of Classic Canes enjoying a snowy walk through the Classic Canes woodlands after the close of business one Christmas.
We realise that potential account-holders looking at our website, perhaps in parts of the world far from Somerset, England, may like independent reassurance that Classic Canes is indeed a professional and caring, family-run, walking stick business. Here are a selection of comments that account holders and others have been kind enough to make:
"Your canes become more and more popular in Japan. So we are pleased with your canes. We wish you good luck with your business." Haruhiko & Ikuyo Iizuka, Panatec Corp, Japan. May 2013
"I am so pleased to have your sticks in the shop. The ones we had before offered little variety, but ladies come to us wanting to match the canes to their outfits." Vanessa Wright, Easier Living Mobility Centre, UK. May 2013.
"Dear Charlotte, Thank you for all your great support to work on and arrange this urgent shipment. Thanks to your great effort, products are now on the way to Korea. Thank you again." Rachel Kim, Hi'im Intertrade Co, South Korea. May 2013
[I can't take much credit for this; Alyson, Steve and the packing team did all the difficult bits! CG]
"Thanks very much for the Times Literary Supplements you used to pack our order. There are several Anglophile individuals in the vicinity who have happily shared the spoils." Robert Bell, Sakta, Sweden, May 2013
"I cannot fault Classic Canes on your products, service, brochures and bulletins." Paul Caruana, Easy Care Systems Ltd, UK, May 2013
"I'm starting a new shop and I want the top brands, so Classic Canes is the obvious choice." Jakki Williams, Springhill Mobility, UK, May 2013
"Classic Canes are the best walking stick suppliers in the UK." Corinne Wilson, Mobility Freedom Ltd, UK, May 2013
"Thanks a lot. I specially like the one [seat stick] with the leather leg. Specially thanks for so excellent, real intelligent and so British style of communications. Looking at your company marketing and specially your personal style and attitude with customers, I feel myself in the best tradition of education, today as it was in the past, for example, Downton Abbey. Personal thanks." Elena Sikorski, Megapress Group, Latvia, March 2013.
"Hi Alyson. Thank you for your prompt reply. Great service and products!" Mark Whettingsteel, Ability Matters, UK, March 2013.
"Thank you very much indeed for looking after us so well. Everything arrived well - beautifully packed too!" Gabriele von Liel, Das Einhorn im Garten, Germany, January 2013.
"Just to let you know that as soon as we put one of your knobsticks out - it sold! We're hoping the rest of the sticks go the same way too! Have a great Christmas - and here's to a prosperous New Year!" Helena Hewetson, James Purdey & Sons Ltd, London, December 2012.
"The sticks are absolute beauties...thanks again." Owen Smith, Lollysmith, USA, November 2012.
"I don't think I have ever enjoyed a buying experience more!" - Keith Duke, after a visit to the Classic Canes storerooms, Keith Duke, UK, November 2012.
"Just a short message to thank Classic Canes for the help and courtesy you have extended to my IT manager in her quest for supplier support. She has told me how helpful you have been in this respect so thank you for that. Let's hope sales are brisk with sticks and seat sticks." Jim Louth, Luck of Louth, UK, October 2012.
"The goods arrived this morning. Many thanks for your usual, highly efficient service: the best out of our 60+ suppliers, including the Germans!" - Thierry Wertheimer, Marygold, France, October 2012.
"I absolutely love my walking stick [Classic Canes Union Flag stick]...you would not believe how many comments I have had; everybody loves it!" - Natasha Baker, double gold medal winning Paralympian (dressage), October 2012 (stick supplied by a Classic Canes stockist).
"What a great day we had with you all. The sun had its hat on and we were out. The tour [of the walking stick coppices] with Ben was so interesting and to talk face to face with our 'voices on the phone' was also good. To sit at the end of the tour with a drink and good food finished a perfect day. Thank you to you all." Ann Stephens, Hannah's, UK, May 2012
"It was lovely to have such a warm welcome from everyone and the opportunity to meet you all in person for a chat, celebrate with you and see how hard you work over there in Somerset. We both convey an enormous thank you to the Porters for their generosity in sharing so much about the business and providing such a delicious lunch." Bev & Ed, Love UK Made Ltd, UK, May 2012.
"To all at Classic Canes. Max and I would like to say a big thank you for such a lovely day on Sunday. We thought the tour and talk were extremely interesting and so informative. What a beautiful place to live and work. Thank you also for the lunch. We wish you well in the future." Max & Liz Kislingbury, Careful Mobility, UK, May 2012
"Charlotte, just a note to you and the team thanking you for such a lovely event. The surroundings were delightful, the food delicious and we learnt so much along the way. It was also lovely to meet and talk face to face with the team. Please do pass on our thanks to everyone for such an enjoyable occasion. Here's to the next 30 years!" Deborah McCallum, Out & About, UK, May 2012
"Thank you so much for your hospitality on Monday which both Suzanne and I appreciated greatly. It was fascinating to hear about Classic Canes and see the process from start to finish. We will in future look at those sticks in a totally different light! These canes are after all not just any canes but Classic Canes! Whilst this may sound a little familiar, we think it's true, so well done to you all." Kim Sproat, Bickleigh Mill, UK, May 2012
"Hi Charlotte and everyone at Classic Canes. We are writing to thank you all for such a wonderful day on Monday to celebrate your 30th anniversary. We really enjoyed your hospitality and everyone was so welcoming and made us feel at home." Graham, Rosemary and Claire Mitson, Stick of Lostwithiel, UK, May 2012.
"Thank you for yesterday. It was a lovely day. John and I both enjoyed ourselves plus the fact the sun came out made it even better! It was great to see you again, meet your mother and father, and the rest of the team. I really admire your work ethic and to see a family business such as yourselves still growing after 30 years is a real credit to you and your family." - Caroline Mandaracas, Tackle & Guns, UK, May 2012
"Thank you so much for the warm welcome, food and the very interesting talk and tour round the woods and workshop. We both enjoyed the links with the history and the story of the sticks. Best wishes, Steve & Caroline." Country Quality, UK, May 2012
"Thank you very much for receiving us at the Classic Canes site last week. We knew that Classic Canes was a special company, but being with you and Diana and Ben made us understand that Classic Canes is a unique company. We all equally appreciated the warmth of our reception and in some small way shared the pride that you so rightly have in the company's you've built. Your father's enthusiasm is so tangible and contagious! We also learned a lot and are working on an order to include some of the new styles we viewed. For us, it was an unusually profitable and enjoyable visit." - Robert Bell, Sakta, Sweden, April 2012 www.sakta.se
"We are really pleased with the sales of Classic Canes since we opened the account at the Tackle & Guns show last year. No exaggeration, we are selling at least two or even three times as many sticks since switching from another brand. Love the catalogue and the handy sales tips! Keep up the good work." - Alan Guthrie, Bagnall and Kirkwood Ltd, UK, March 2012.
"To Charlotte and all at Classic Canes: Thank you for the wonderful products and service that you give us. It is a real pleasure doing business with you. We wish you all the best over the Festive Season and a great 2012." - Colin & Gillian Wesley, Wesley's Tobacconist, South Africa, December 2011.
"Parcel received in good order last Friday. Many thanks for your excellent service as usual. Wishing you all a Happy Christmas and best wishes for the New Year. Kind regards, Thierry" - Thierry Wertheimer, Marygold, France. December 2011.
"The walking sticks have arrived. Thank you for your tremendous service. Have a relaxing Christmas break." - Hazel, Advertime, UK. December 2011.
"Thanks for your excellent service throughout the year. Merry Christmas and all the best for 2012!" - Graham and staff, The Emporium, UK. December 2011
"My mother would never use a walking stick until I gave her a beautiful Classic Canes floral one from our shop (a 4099G). Now she goes everywhere with it and wouldn't be seen without it!" - Gail Wood, Arrow Farm Shop, UK. October 2011
"Is that you on the cover? It is quite beautiful!!! Thanks for the catalogue. Our clients are very impressed by the fact that this is a very British company and therefore synonymous with style, elegance and reliability. The cover and all the catalogue underlines that fact."
- Lucia Davies, Davies of London, Sicily. September 2011.
"We got the catalogue - it is really great. Not only new products - the range is so wide - but also all other images showing your place and surroundings which must be beautiful. Your English is very nice. I know it is your mother language but in these days not many people can use their mother language. Czech is a nice language but sometimes I think some of our famous writers must turn over in their graves. I'll place the order soon."
- Hana Hegerova, Tena Inc, Czech Republic. September 2011.
"I have received the new catalogue this morning. Wow! I can appreciate what a lot of hard work you have had to do to produce it. I hope you had some fun along the way as well as the long days and sleepless nights."
- Simon Goodall www.allgoodideas.co.uk UK. September 2011.
"Thank you for the beautiful new catalogue. I enjoy selling the sticks more than anything else."
- Mike Ruddock, All Mobility, England. September 2011.
"We made a list from the old catalogue but now when we got the elegant new one we had to start all over again!!! It looks great - and you look great - because it is you on the front page isn't it? You have a wonderful business!"
- Sabina Swahn, Vobis, Sweden. September 2011.
"I cannot tell you how impressed I am with the latest Classic Canes catalogue which very clearly shows the sign of your care and inspiration and direction. Many congratulations indeed and not least to your hard-working models, all of whom I know and recognise!"
- Norman Drummond, Drummond International, Scotland. September 2011.
"What a treat! I have just spent a lovely half hour going though the new catalogue. Congratulations on yet another attractive and informative edition - the photos are superb and the sales tips very useful. Many thanks."
- Jan Wilson, Bags of Style, England. September 2011.
"Thank you for sending us your new catalogue. You have done a good job. Especially the very good looking people in your catalogue along with the sticks."
- this one is from a supplier, but we couldn't resist quoting him! September 2011.
"I have just read your new brochure. It is excellent - well done. I found it quite inspirational and thought the sales tips an excellent and useful idea. I like the fact that most of the models are family members too. It reinforces the intimacy of the company."
- Shaun Lewis, Dunscar Garden Centre, UK. August 2011.
"Having just completed my Three Peaks Challenge, I feel I should drop you a line and say thank you very much for your generous support with the pair of trekking poles you let me have. Although they have taken a severe battering from three mountains in 24 hours (including a couple of impressive falls!) I can honestly say I could not have completed the event without them - for the last couple of miles of the Snowdon path, I really enjoyed the support in order to drag myself back to base! It was a fantastic experience and I have also managed to raise more than £750 for charity too."
- John Hunter, editor, Tackle & Guns magazine. July 2011.
(Following NAIDEX trade fair): "It was a lovely experience on your stand. I felt a bit like a child in a sweet shop!!"
- Terry Connop, Moorland Mobility, England. April 2011.
"To work with Classic Canes is a real delight. They know that quality and service never goes out of fashion. The canes are so beautiful, it's hard to see them walk away from the shop. I want to keep them all; they give my shop a sense of exclusivity and class."
- Carina Eneroth, Skomakeri Framat, Sweden. February 2011
"I cannot think of a negative comment to make about this family run company. Put them to the test and join us, their family of supporters who enjoy our relationship with them and their products. "Lovely people + good products + excellent service = successful business" sums it all up for us."
- Colin Wesley, Wesley's Tobacconist, South Africa. February 2011
"Just to prove how easy it is to order online, this order has been entered by Katie aged 11 with her Daddy's consent. If you wish to use this in your next newsletter, please do! Many thanks, Martin and Katie."
- Martin Maley, Mobility Homecare, England. January 2011
"It's great the sticks are in such demand and that I 'found' your product."
- Peter Larsson, Hunden & Herden, Sweden
"You can 'tell the whole world' how fantastic your service is - even to the other side of the globe here in N.Z...5 days from submitting order to receiving same!"
- Harvey Dalton, Goldfield Studios Ltd, New Zealand
"Thank you so much; it's been a real pleasure working with you and Classic Canes! Thank you for all your help and support you have so kindly given me over the past few years; what a truly wonderful company to deal with! I will come and visit your stand at Spring Fair!!"
- Kiki Kettunen, Camp Hopson, England.