November 2013: Bishop’s Move – Chris Bishop

‘Bishop’s Move’ has been based in our area for many years and Chris Bishop gave us an interesting and amusing talk about the firm and its history. It started in 1854 when Joseph Bishop moved from Norfolk to London to be a policeman and started a removals service. Now it is the largest family-owned removal firm in the country with depots from Aberdeen to Gibraltar. In the 19th century horse-drawn vehicles were used to move customers’ chattels – the horses were kept on the company’s farm at Morden. Longer moves used the railways. Containerisation has long been in use. Steam traction engines were used before motor transport became the norm.

Famous customers? Who else but Bishop’s Move should move the Archbishop of Canterbury from Lambeth Palace? And who wanted to move that very day – an outgoing Prime Minister from No 10! Unusual loads were the contents of an Art Gallery and a spotter plane to the Falkland Islands. A convoy of some 30 vans was used to move a factory in the 1950s. Chris spiced his talk with some amusing quotations from customers’ letters and concluded with some tips for moving house – most importantly, discuss it with the company well in advance.