Kempe & Tower

walwyn Sun, 11/15/2009 - 21:36
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CE Kempe - West haddon

Charles Eamer Kempe (1837-1907) originally trained as a priest, but due to a stammer studied archeticture the main part of which being the 14th century English Gothic, George Bodley. Working for Bodley, Kempe learned the art of decorating church walls and ceilings. However, he became interested in stained glass and studied the art and craft at the studios of Clayton & Bell. By 1866 Kempe was working, with two assistants, as an independent designer in London, and in 1869 unhappy with the quality of the work produced for him, Kempe started his own workshop at Millbrook Place.


After Kempe's death in 1907 the company changed its name to Kempe & Co. Ltd under the direction of Kempe's cousin Walter Tower. The principle designer was John Lisle who had joined the firm in 1886. The company continued making stained glass until it folded in 1934 due to lack of orders during the depression.