Sean Sutcliffe is co-founder of Benchmark, one of Britain’s leading furniture makers and widely regarded as the UK’s powerhouse of craft.
After graduating from Parnham College for Furniture Makers, Sean Sutcliffe had a dream of launching his own furniture workshop and was inspired by his travels around Denmark to bring industry and employment to a rural community. It was at this time that he met Terence Conran and a firm friendship was made over a shared interest in making, wood, design and sustainability. They founded Benchmark together and Benchmark’s Berkshire workshop and showroom are situated in the grounds of Terence’s country home. Beginning with just 3 people, Benchmark is now a team of 70 with a second workshop in Dorset.
Formerly an Ambassador for Apprenticeships to No 10 Downing Street, Sean cares deeply about environmental sustainability, craftsmanship and the regeneration of the British furniture industry. He has been an active promotor of the health and well-being benefits of using solid timber furniture in both commercial and residential projects for many years.
Benchmark runs an award-winning apprenticeship scheme, was the first furniture maker to be awarded the Queen’s Award for Sustainable Development and is proud to be at the forefront of the development of environmental Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) in furniture making.