J W Berisford Wholesale Tools
 | Home | History | Contact | Terms & Conditions | Sign In |

J W Berisford History

Early in the 1900's, Billy Berisford travelled from Sheffield by train with an old paste table and a small satchel crammed with hand tools and cutlery, to stand the open market in Castleford to earn extra income to support his family. In a few years, soon to join him was his 12-year-old son James William.

After James William's father had died, Jim (as he was now known) carried on his fathers business and travelled the width and breadth of the British Isles standing fairs such as Cockermouth and Penrith in (Cumbria) and markets Tenby, Cricceth and Neath (in Wales) to name but a few, earning respect amongst his expanding clientele. He became known as the 'Sheffield Toolman'.

As business grew, Jim saw an opening in wholesaling these tools and cutlery as he was constantly asked to supply more and more to shops which made him one of the first wholesalers in the country. With a design for a new hand saw, he walked into a local Sheffield saw manufacturer and asked them to make it for him. This subsequently became the saw manufacturer and Jim's best selling saw.

He started to rent a small workshop in the centre of Sheffield as business thrived. He outgrew three more premises before moving to our current location. In the meantime, his son-in-law Ron had joined the company to help with the business.

Sadly in 1990 Jim died at the ripe old age of 84. But in 1994 his grandson joined the company and eventually introduced a new range to give Berisfords a unique identity. He decided to call it TOOLMAN. After all, Jim was the 'original' [Sheffield] Toolman.

We currently supply over 500 retailers in the UK and have supplied items worldwide from New Zealand to Hawaii and from Finland to South Africa via the internet.

Today, still run as a family owned business, we stock over 3,000 different items in our 5,500sq foot warehouse. We strive for excellence in our bid to become an even better company, providing our customers, existing and new, with the service and efficiency that they require.

Up until the Autumn of 2005, Ron was still standing Castleford outdoor market, never missing a year between the three generations and keeping it in the family. We were the longest serving family on the outdoor market serving over 100 years, only beaten on the indoor market by a couple of butchers' families.

North Yorkshire 1997


Jim's old market stall sign

Jim Berisford and his wife Phyllis
Neath 1968

Huddersfield - 1974

Current Warehouse


© Copyright J W Berisford Wholesale Tools