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Article: Merrythought Bears, a loyal companion through life

Merrythought Bears, a loyal companion through life

Merrythought, a teddy bear company started in 1930 by Gordon Holmes, prides itself on the promise that appeared in their very first catalogue, ‘Quality, Courtesy and Service’. Over 90 years later, not much has changed about this Shropshire based company. After four generations the Merrythought teddy bear is still made using the same techniques, at the same factory in the picturesque heritage site of Ironbridge.

Factory workers at Merrythought 


At the factory, a highly skilled team of artisan’s hand-craft each teddy bear from the very best natural materials. Each piece of the bear is intricately cut from mohair or alpaca plush. Once the eyes, legs and arms are assembled, the bears are stuffed to the perfect weight, creating the recognisable characteristics of a Merrythought bear. Finally, the traditional gold and black stamp of approval is stitched on to the right paw.



To this day, the Merrythought teddy bear is regarded as the ultimate childhood toy. With their timeless hand-stitched nose and smile, each has its unique character for child or adult, to fall in love with.

Making a Merrythought bear

‘A Merrythought is not just a teddy bear, but an exquisite piece of British heritage and a loyal companion through life’

Merrythought has manufactured limited edition teddy bears for many commemorative events such as the Olympic Games, Royal weddings, birthdays, births and special film events such as the Christopher Robin film (the original ‘Edward Bear’ was the inspiration behind AA Milne’s Winnie the Pooh). They have also worked with high profile brands and institutions such as Burberry, The Savoy Hotel, The Royal Collection Trust and of course, Glyndebourne.

The George and Mary teddy bears were created exclusively for Glyndebourne. Dressed perfectly for a night at the opera, Sir George wears a singed collar and black bow tie, and Lady Mary dons a delicate cream fascinator. Both have soft velvet paws and a hand embroidered gold ‘G’.

Lady Mary and Sir George Glyndebourne bears

Tradition and heritage is something that Merrythought are immensely proud of, and their factory, like our own Glyndebourne Opera House is considered a magical place where treasured memories are passed down generations.

 Shop our Glyndebourne Bears here.

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