Last month saw Glass and Glazing Federation (GGF) invite the owners of Mitchell Glass down to the GGF London offices for a day to remember.
Peter and Susan Roden were given the VIP treatment, with a guided tour of the GGF’s historic timeline of the glass and glazing industry, followed by a photo-shoot as they were re-acquainted with a special piece of Scottish glazing history, and finally, a special GGF award for “Outstanding Service to the Industry” at The President’s Reception held at St Bride Foundation Institute in the shadow of St Paul’s Cathedral.
On receiving the award, Peter Roden, commented: “I am truly honoured and I’d like to thank the GGF and everyone for making it so special. It has been a great day for both Susan and I, not only receiving this award but also to be photographed at the GGF offices, wearing the 90 year old Scottish Glass Merchants and Suppliers Association President’s Chain of Office which was worn by Susan’s father when he was President of the Scottish Glass Association in 1992. That was a very humbling experience.”
Mitchell Glass has its own unique and illustrious history going back almost 145 years. In 1862, Robert Mitchell ran away from home in Kinross, Perthshire at the age of just 14 years old. Keen to see the world and make something of himself, he made it to Edinburgh, where he served his time as a Glazier and then a few years later moved to the Scottish Borders and set up his business R. Mitchell Glass in Hawick in 1875.
Robert then developed the business and built new premises in Hawick to accommodate the different elements of the company and in doing so increased employment in the area. After nine years of building up a thriving local business, he turned his focus to local politics, and in 1884 was elected as a Town Councillor. Three years later, in 1887 he was appointed a Baillie and in 1896, he started his four-year tenure as Provost of Hawick.
As he approached retirement, Robert passed the business to his son Alex, who unfortunately died in 1948 and had no family to take over the business. The Board of Directors of Mitchell Glass decided to continue with the name Mitchell Glass that is still used to this day.
The history of Mitchell Glass also prominently includes Susan Roden’s family. Her father Bill Fisher was a Member of The Scottish Glass Merchants and Suppliers Association which went on to become The Scottish Glass Association (SGA). Bill Fisher who was the sole owner of Mitchell Glass, was elected SGA President in 1992. The Scottish Glass Association merged with the GGF in 1996 though Mitchell Glass has been a GGF Member since 1987.
Current owner, Peter Roden started as an apprentice carding engineer and from successful completion and study, he worked in insurance and bookkeeping before starting in the glazing business as a sales manager for Mitchell Glass.
The family business theme remained with Peter persuading his wife, Susan, to join the team again. She had initially started her Mitchells’ career as a “Saturday girl” at the Market Street shop while still at school. Both Susan and Peter have now been active members of the GGF for over 25 years, with Peter being the first ever Chairman of GGF Scotland, which also included representing Scottish Members on the GGF General Council, a body that oversaw all the activities of the GGF.
The visit to the GGF London offices was a great and memorable occasion for Mitchell Glass, and Susan and Peter are now looking forward to the company’s future.
Glass and Glazing Federation
40 Rushworth Street
t: 0207 939 9101
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