Skip to content

Well, it all happened in Episode 10. King Edward VII’s shopping spree, romances blossom and end, a key member of staff leaves and a humiliating trip to the theatre.

Duke & Duchess of York 1928Throughout the series I have been trying to look at the similarities between Harry Selfridge and his business and my Great Grandfather, William Henry Vokins. There have been many in episodes 1 through to 9. However the similarities between our family and the Selfridges in episode 10 are more tenuous.

Let’s start with royalty. We have had minor Royals visit our store in Brighton, but not for a shopping spree. Several members of my family have been privileged to meet Royalty. In April 1928 my Great Grandfather met the Duke & Duchess of York (pictured right), the Duke who was later to become King George VI, the current Queen’s father.

Moving forward a hundred years or so after Harry Selfridge’s audience with King Edward VII, I was lucky enough to be introduced to HM Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh in 2007.

Over 130 years, you are bound to have key members of staff leave and Vokins was and would have been no different to Selfridges in that regard.

SJV meets the Queen and D of EWe have never been the subject of a play, but [email protected] and Big Brand Beds have been very involved with the theatre, particularly the Theatre Royal in Brighton. [email protected] and Big Brand Beds were the first company to get involved in sponsoring productions and had the pleasure of being involved in (sponsoring) 4 pantomimes and Sweeny Todd starring Jason Donovan.

I told you it was tenuous, but I hope you have enjoyed reading a few snippets of the history of Vokins and Big Brand Beds.

We continue to trade from our store in Rustington and are continually growing our online offer on