With a history spanning almost 80 years, Roberts Radios is one of the most iconic heritage brands in the UK. A brand which managed to very successfully move into the new century, mantaining its classic image while at the same time updating the technology of its pieces, and keeping up to date with the market.
Founded in 1932 by Harry Roberts and Leslie Bidmead, Roberts Radios was quick to establish itself as the best British brand for high quality portable radios, also gaining its first (of three) Royal Warrants for “Radio Manufacturer to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II” in 1955.
Their products were, and still are, iconic in more than one way: rumour has it that Roberts were the only radios available in British prisons for a long time, as they could be easily opened upon arrival to check for contraband items.
A small, family owned business, Roberts Radios has been at the forefront of British broadcasting industry, but it has also managed to survive its decline and remain at the top, perhaps thanks to their unique range which includes technological updates as well as iconic designs.
The Revival Digital Radio is the most popular among its products, a retro piece with an instantly recognizable 1950s’-inspired design which mimicks an old radio but with an ultra modern DAB inside. The look is simple: covered in leather and with a handle for practical portability, the top features rotary tuning and volume controls and station name display, while the front is kept minimal with the Roberts golden logo. The amazing range of colours includes the bold and bright such as red, yellow and purple, a selection of exquisite pastels from pink to baby blue, and classics such as dark green, brown and navy blue. The company also updated the look of the Revival through a collaboration with British designer Cath Kidston (the finished products are covered in flower print canvas in the style of the designer) and with a Union Jack version, originally created as a one-off but so popular that had to be put in production.
Constantly modern, Roberts is also producing an environmentally-friendly range, with solar-powered radios as well as reduced power consumption and longer battery life. They can also pride themselves on many firsts, such as “the first DAB/FM radio for the iPod’ and the ‘first truly portable DAB/Wi Fi radio.”
- Rosa Bertoil