The History of Hubbards Seeds

Navigation House, Sleaford
Navigation House, Sleaford
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The Hub in Sleaford
The Hub in Sleaford
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Hubbards Seeds started trading as James Hubbard and Sons, in Lincolnshire, in 1882.  Its original home was Navigation House and Wharf in Sleaford. The Grade II listed building in which the company started its business is still there and is now a visitor centre.

In 1905, the company was dissolved and relaunched as Hubbard and Phillips Ltd.  Under the ownership of Charles Hubbard and George Phillips, the company went from strength to strength operating as a seed and blue pea merchant.  The company‘s first warehouse in Sleaford has since become the National Centre for Craft and Design and is today known as “The Hub” in acknowledgement of the building’s history.

Hubbard and Phillips traded for 68 years until 1973, when the partnership dissolved and Hubbards Seeds was formed by brothers Barrie and Richard Hubbard.   In 1986, Robert Patchett joined the company, as did his father, Gerald.  Both had extensive seed expertise having previously worked for the Miln Masters seed company.

When Gerald Patchett and Barrie Hubbard retired in 1989, Robert was made partner with Richard.  They continued to run the company together until 1992, when Robert Patchett took sole charge and opted to keep the company trading under the historic Hubbards Seeds brand and name.

Robert’s son, Barnaby Patchett, joined the company in 1995 and worked alongside his father until he was made partner in 2000.  Sadly, Robert Patchett passed away in 2010, having worked in the seed trade for 43 years.  Barnaby carried on trading alone and has done so for the past three years. 

Barnaby felt the time was right for Hubbards Seeds to go national again and that the best way to achieve this aim was with a company that had the same professional values and family ethos, with an experienced, knowledgeable and hard-working sales team located throughout  the country.  The only organisation that matched these requirements was United Oilseeds.

In November 2013 the two companies became one, with Hubbards Seeds continuing to trade under its original name and with Banaby Patchett as its Business and Product Manager.

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