Hamleys today, with over 255 years experience in bringing smiles to children and is known and trusted all over the world. At Christmas time, what better place to wonder.
With thanks to William Hamley who dreamed of opening the best toy shop in the world and in 1760, he did, cramming 'Noah's Ark' with every kind of toy, from rag dolls to tin soldiers.By the time Queen Victoria came to the throne in 1837, Hamleys was already a London landmark. Families flocked to William's 'Joy Emporium'.
So successful was the shop that in 1881 a new branch opened in Regent Street. To cope with the public's growing appetite for playthings.
Hamleys added a further five floors of toys. Unfortunately Hamleys faced hard times in the late 1920s, along with everybody else. In 1931, the picture looked bleak and the shop was forced to close.
But this story has a happy ending. Walter Lines, the Chairman of the Tri-Ang company, bought Hamleys and worked hard to bring customers back. In 1938, his efforts were rewarded as Queen Mary gave Hamleys the Royal Warrant! In 1955, Walter Lines was honoured with a second Royal Warrant as a 'Toys and Sports Merchant'.
Arriving back in the present, we find Hamleys in its famous location at 188-196 Regent Street, London, England. Step over the threshold and you enter a world of joy and wonder, oh to be a kid again.