Nikki Newcombe, owner and founder of the Bliss of London saddle company has been accepted into the Worshipful Company of Saddlers by redemption of the trade in a ceremony held recently at Saddlers’ Hall. The honour also means Nikki has become a Freeman of the City of London.
“It is an utter privilege to have been invited to become a member of the Worshipful Company of Saddlers, and I am very humbled to have been admitted to this highly respected Guild. It definitely feels like recognition for the work within this trade over the years which I am passionate about”, said Nikki.
Nikki has always been involved with horses and started working in the saddlery trade in 1995. She founded Bliss of London in 2011 when she took the plunge as a female, non-saddler to start her own saddle company with just one saddler. Her passion for combining fit and function with style and quality led to a growth in popularity of Bliss of London saddles and the company is now highly successful, employing 26 people and exporting worldwide.
Supporting the trade has always been close to Nikki’s heart, and she has served on the BETA council since 2006, and as Chairman in 2016-18. “I thoroughly enjoyed working on many projects, particularly where focus has been towards saddles and saddle fitting”, says Nikki, who was part of the lecturing team to deliver the first Foundation Course in New Zealand in 2019.
The Worshipful Company of Saddlers is one of the oldest Livery Companies in the City of London, tracing its origins back to the eleventh century, and became a company when a Royal Charter was granted in 1363. The Company was established to regulate and uphold the standards of saddlery making within the City of London, and Saddlers Hall provided a venue for traders to meet and trade.
One of the few Livery Companies to remain relevant and flourishing today, the Company supports the pursuit of excellence in the craft of saddlery making and is committed to equestrianism and education through training and qualifications, providing prizes at equestrian events and underwriting the work of the Society of Master Saddlers.