The Harvey and Hamilton Story


Harvey and Hamilton was born on the plains of the Masai Mara enjoying very civilised sundowners under the setting African sun, having come off a successful ascent of Mount Kenya. And out there they really know how to do sundowners well.

Founder Nick Hamilton has been long frustrated at the absence of any combination of both quality and functionality to keep drinks and food cold: wicker hampers, while attractive and traditional are heavy, cumbersome and have negligible insulative properties; while cheap polyester and foam cool bags are not particularly attractive, poorly made and frankly pretty useless. And how are you supposed to be able to keep ice cold for a decent gin and tonic in the field?

And so under that equatorial setting sun, gin and tonic (with ice) in hand the decision was made to design a range of gear specifically designed for sundowners, and eminently suitable for picnics, that used the best materials, was made with the finest workmanship, looked good, and most importantly performed well.

Very important factors were taken into account at design stage, such as cool bags being tall enough to take a champagne bottle upright, ice buckets that close snugly enough not to leak if they should roll over in the back of the Land Rover, and materials that are robust enough to withstand the British weather and enthusiastic use.

Samples of leather were sourced from all over Europe, but all rejected in favour of a tannery far closer to home in Colyton, Devon. In fact most of our materials are British. Manufacture in China was also considered, but against a lot of advice to the contrary we decided that it was important that our kit should be made in Britain to support British jobs and economy, and also where we can monitor the quality of manufacture much more closely and introduce design improvements more quickly. This comes at some cost but we believe that the quality of our craftsmen in Britain justifies this cost.