Interview With: Anthony Eyre
Company Name: The Letter Press of Cirencester Ltd
Location / Coverage: Cirencester, Gloucestershire / UK & Europe
What does The Letter Press of Cirencester do?
The Letter Press is a traditional jobbing printer concentrating on producing quality stationery tailored to the individual requirements and preferences of our customers.
Who works at The Letter Press of Cirencester and what are your roles?
The Press employs a total of 15 under the direction of myself, Anthony Eyre; Chris, Mark and Adrian man our printing office, producing the work for our finishers Karen, Pamela, Mark, Jemma and Luke – who also does our digital printing. Upstairs the typesetting and artwork is done by Patrick, Sue and Carly, while Renée runs Customer Service and Leila does the accounts. Last but not least Helen keeps our very attractive shop, as well as running our samples service.
How did The Letter Press of Cirencester come about and how long has the company been running?
The Letter Press was established in 1986 when I married Kate and left a London career in publishing to live with her in Wiltshire. I had a background in printing from school and also printing for the William Morris Society; I was soon joined by Kate who brought with her, from WH Smith, an experience of marketing and stationery retailing.
Why is your company called The Letter Press of Cirencester?
It is a play on words: we set up as letterpress printers, who primarily printed letters, i.e. personal stationery. We still print letterpress, but have also added a number of other processes over the years.
Describe your workshop.
We are based in a long building, once a coaching inn, in the centre of Cirencester, on the entrance to Brewery Car Park. One end is the old gabled inn built from Cotswold stone, leading at the other end to a long shed where the printing office is located.
Have you always been creative?
I have always enjoyed the world of typography: designs produced by The Letter Press are derivative, and the sources are varied in the extreme: the letters cut into Trajan’s Column in Rome, William Morris’s work, the styles of the private press printers in the 1920s and ’30s, Victorian copperplate, the work of Eric Gill, and so on.
What wedding stationery can The Letter Press of Cirencester make?
We print letterpress, litho, hot-foil, blind embossed, die stamped and digital colour. We add finishes such as satin or organza ribbons, bindi jewels, tassels and silk cords, tissue or paper envelope linings, gilt or coloured edges with round or square corners. We are led by what our customers want.
Do you offer a bespoke wedding stationery service as well as your collections?
All our wedding styles are starting points which customers can adapt to their own taste.
How do you create bespoke stationery for each of your couples? What’s involved in the planning?
Usually customers wanting a completely bespoke service have a fairly clear idea of what they want, generally supplying the artwork themselves. Otherwise one-to-one consultation based on samples we can supply is the way we go.
Does The Letter Press of Cirencester just make wedding stationery or do you have other products and services?
We print a wide range of personal stationery, business stationery and social stationery as well, with a wide range of party invitations.
Do you have a favourite stationery collection that The Letter Press of Cirencester has made?
Our motif style printed letterpress on Impression board has been very successful.
Random question… Do you have any pets?
The Press dog is a whippet called Jack. When not hogging the heater he is usually chasing rabbits.
Where can I find out more about The Letter Press of Cirencester?
Visit our website www.letterpress.co.uk