Hillbrush was established by brothers Fred and Bill Coward in 1922. They were later joined by their respective sons David and Richard along with Bill's son-in-law, Brian Thomas. The company is now run by the third generation, David's son Philip, who is President of Hillbrush in the USA and Managing Director of Hillbrush in the UK. Richard's son Peter is Vice President of Hillbrush USA, located in Baltimore, Maryland. The fourth generation, Philip’s son Charles, is Commercial Director of Hillbrush, overseeing Sales and Marketing operations. Philip's nephew, Andy Coward, joined Hillbrush in 2016 as IT and Finance Director.
The company began in the small rural town of Mere, Wiltshire. It originally specialised in dairy and agricultural brushes, but within a few years many of the streets were being swept with brushes made by Hillbrush.
Hillbrush is unique in having its own brush fibre-dressing department which began in 1926 and now processes all types of natural fibres from around the world. Having a fibre-dressing department makes it possible to offer special mixes, with natural fibres used alongside synthetic materials. The company's use of synthetic fibre has increased in recent years due to the manufacture of specialist brushes. These include brushes used in food production or catering establishments, and in hygiene-sensitive areas such as hospitals and kitchens.
Automatic brush making machines were first introduced in the 1930s, but over time increasingly sophisticated production equipment has been installed. This allows Hillbrush to manufacture various types of brushes that were not previously made. As well as producing millions of brushes each year, Hillbrush also offers a selection of other cleaning-related products such as squeegees, shovels, buckets, floor signs, scoops, scrapers, paddles and more.
Hillbrush originally specialised in making wooden backed brushes and is still one of the largest manufacturers of wooden brushes in the world. Through innovation and product development we were successfully able to introduce a range of plastic backed brushes for the food and beverage industries.
In 2001 the company purchased Champion Brush Inc. based in Baltimore, USA, the foremost manufacturer of horse grooming brushes in North America. This is now incorporated within Hillbrush USA which distributes hygiene products to the food industry.
Our unrivalled experience and expertise has contributed to our prolonged success, with Hillbrush now producing almost three thousand different products, supplied to over 90 countries across the globe. We look forward to introducing more customers to our vast product range in the years ahead.