PINION founder, Piers Berry along with other British watchmakers talk to Economia Magazine about the Revival of British watchmaking and what it means to be ‘Made in Britain’.
The original article can be viewed at:
Piers Berry launched Pinion because of a passion for watches. While some of Pinion’s branding is wrapped up in geography (“Made in Switzerland, raised in England” is one slogan), Berry is cynical about the trend for marketing this heritage. “It’s less about our watches being made in England, more about people buying Pinion because they like the design and want something only a few people have.”
Berry adds the British tag is in danger. “There is a cheesy Britishness with Union Jacks and that tailored, Savile Row appeal. We want Pinion to be geographically neutral. A Pinion watch could be from Japan or Switzerland. It shouldn’t be wrapped in a British flag. We’re a company that just happens to be based here. My remit is to make the best product I can for the money.”
Pinion does have ambitions to make a movement. “There will be a Pinion movement, but not in-house. We design, conceptualise and assemble.” One of Pinion’s best watches is the 1969 Revival. Described as “new vintage” the company got movements made in 1969 but never opened or assembled.
“If we were in Australia, no one would care. Because British watchmaking has a heritage there’s this expectation you either do it properly or you don’t bother. But there’s no right and wrong way to do it. Someone will buy your watch and they’ll enjoy and wear it and that’s all that matters.”