The Stained Glass Display Company began life as IWF Ltd back in 1963. IWF was chosen to represent “Ian Wilton Family” as a trading name, as they were and remain a family business.
Already running a successful international business, Ian wanted to experiment with various commercial ideas and to allow him to develop a business trading only in things that interested him. Following Ian’s principles, various successful business ideas were tried over the years. In the 1980s the current owner, son Neil Wilton, came to the business to start making and selling tools for stained glass workers. This developed into a successful Stained Glass Centre in Newcastle where stained glass craft tools, glass and materials were sold.
Neil and his team started teaching Stained Glass classes which helped grow the craft in the region. Many Stained Glass commissions were undertaken too, some originated by class attendees who now appreciated the skills involved. Former students have gone on to successfully work at all levels of the industry, something which Neil is extremely proud of.
During this time, IWF were approached by one or two museums who were looking for superior methods to display their Stained Glass collections. Traditional wooden frames were poor for the conservation of lead, were intrusive and often unsightly. From this small beginning IWF became the specialists in displaying, storing and lighting stained glass panels.
The bespoke framing of Stained Glass Panels became such a key business that a company was set up devoted to it. This is “The Stained Glass Display Company” which operates under the trading name of Martlet Ltd. Sadly Ian Wilton is no longer with us, but his legacy remains through Martlet and the hard work of his Son Neil and Ian’s Grandson Andrew.
The Stained Glass Display Company has successfully designed, manufactured and delivered bespoke handmade frames all over the world. Their portfolio includes hundreds of pieces for clients including elite museums, churches, schools, universities, hospitals, airports, businesses and private homes. Neil has written a specialist book on the subject of framing Stained Glass (“PICTURE THE LIGHT”) and has given workshops on the subject to schools.
People who are looking for solutions to manage their orphaned Stained Glass, or are looking to find a specialist in framing panels relax when they meet the SGDC. The Stained Glass Display Company are proud to be the recognised leaders in their field and look forward to delivering their solutions and expertise to new and returning clients.