About Us

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About Us 2016-11-06T13:28:12+00:00

R K & J Jones Limited is a family business operating at a 12 acre site close to Thetford in Norfolk, UK.

We manufacture and distribute a wide range of building and decorating products under the name of Bird Brand (our family name) that goes back 6 generations. Our products are gaining a reputation for excellence in Garden centres, hardware stores, builders and decorating merchants throughout the UK, Ireland and other EU countries.

Bird Brand has a wide spectrum of D I Y products such as Ecosote® which is an exclusive ground-breaking water based wood preserver and creosote replacement that is economical, effective and completely safe.
We also offer a niche range of rustic stains and coal tar coatings for period and specialist applications. We pride ourselves on providing a good customer experience, right the way from order and delivery to the satisfaction of applying the final product. Many of these products can only be obtained from Bird Brand.

 

The company has recently invested with an additional 23,000 square feet of new warehousing and with other site improvements, the company is well placed to see continued growth and improve its capabilities. The Directors of the business are the four members of the Jones family and remain fully focused on delivering quality products and superior service for many more years to come.

Our History

When Mr. Terry (T.K). Bird started his Coal Tar and by-products preparations business in 1946, it was then the continuation of four generations of the Bird family in the Tar industry. Fittingly he would also see his grandchildren join the industry. His great-great grandfather Charles Bird who was one of the founders of Messrs. Butlers of Bristol in 1862 and who pioneered the first Coal Tar road surface dressings. In 1871 Charles with his son Robert Bird (Snr) established Robert Bird & Son Tar Distillers in Cardiff, which grew to be the second largest of its kind in the West Country. Followed again at the end of the century by Robert Jnr-(T K Bird’s father) they specialised in coal tar chemistry for timber preservative use where his expertise took him to Canada in 1912, where the extensive use of timber in house building demanded a reliable and lasting wood preservative.

au old factoryAfter war service from 1914 to 1918 Robert Bird was employed as a chief chemist at a Coal Tar Distillation plant near Ghent in Belgium and in 1922 became the Works Manager of the new Tar Distillation plant at Pinxton, Derbyshire. Terry Bird (T.K.) joined him in 1935 gaining experience by working on the plant, in the fitting shop and in the laboratory as well as attending evening classes and day release courses in Fuel Technology, Organic and Inorganic Chemistry. By 1939 Terry Bird was a technical assistant and after war service in the Merchant Navy, he commenced trading on his account in 1946 at packing and selling Coal Tar by-products but mainly Creosote refined for the domestic and fencing markets.

au old productsIn the early days he directed sales to the agricultural and poultry trade through advertising in trade publications. By using second-hand containers, he was able to supply 5 gallon drums of creosote for ten shillings and sixpence, delivered free of charge to any address in England and Wales.Business increased dramatically and repeat orders indicated the success of Bird Brand products. The addition of the 1 gallon and 1/2 gallon packs to the range soon followed and the business turned from the direct-order type to selling through the Hardware and Ironmongers trade. T.K. Bird Ltd. was the first firm to use plastic polythene containers to keep costs down.

In 1976 Terry Bird’s son Peter came into the business but the works at Pinxton had become too small, so in 1980 the business moved to Pye Bridge, Derbyshire. 1981 saw the formation of R.K. & J. Jones – partnered by the son-in-law and daughter of Terry Bird. Based in Downham Market, they were to service East Anglia with their own ‘Bird Brand’ products.

In 1992, Roger and Jane’s sons Richard & Jonathan joined the East Anglia business. In 2003 Peter Bird with his family relocated to Western Australia, but still visits the UK regularly to oversee continued business interests.

The Bird family’s association with Coal Tar products now spans across six generations and the family business continues to invest, diversify and grow with an ethic of hard work, honesty and quality that continue to stand the test of time.

 

Bird Brand products range