Retro Chimps set to design their own space

09 May 2017


A St Helens based retro design company has secured new premises and gained the tools to grow thanks to support from St Helens Chamber.

Retro Chimps, which has been trading for two years, is a unique design company, set up by friends and Brothers-in-law Steven Kay and Hughie Brennan. They aim to create amazing spaces for people to eat, drink, shop, work and live.

“Our vision is to make commercial and domestic interiors creative, joyful, vibrant and interesting.” Said Hughie.

Their main line of work is shop fitting using retro or reclaimed materials. They have worked on a number of projects including cafés, pubs and barbers.

One of their most recent designs includes the ‘puboard’, a one man bar made out of an old cupboard, designed for a festival in Warrington. They hope to take this design to the next level by talking to microbreweries and creating new designs for use at weddings and party functions.

Hughie and Steve first approached the Chamber for support to grow their business and were signed up to the Business Growth Programme which provided 12 hours of free support and guidance to help with their marketing.  The programme also covers many other aspects of business and is tailored to meet the needs of each company that enrols.

Hughie Brennan commented; “The insight we got from the programme has made us re-evaluate the whole business.

“We’ve been able to take stock of what we actually do by breaking down how we see the business then building it back up from the foundations.

“It’s given us renewed confidence in the business. Although we had custom we were at a bit of a standstill and didn’t know what to do next. Now we can go to the next level.”

The first step for the pair was to re-animate their website, making it less about selling and more about the work and projects they are involved in.

“We basically stripped everything down bare, changed the website and built everything back up again.” Commented Steve.

The support from the Business growth programme has helped the business partners to focus on what is needed to drive their business forward. Their website has improved massively and they will soon be opening a workshop and showroom at Unit 8, Chalon Way.

Hughie said; “We’d definitely recommend the Business Growth Programme to other businesses that are looking for support and guidance in where to go next. The whole process was professional and easy to follow but whenever we needed help and advice Helen Morris, our dedicated Business Specialist, was always great with us.”

Steve and Hughie continue to grow their business and will soon be on the lookout for a General Admin Assistant to help them with orders, updating the website and social media. If you are interested in seeing more Retro Chimp designs, visit their website at

Funded by the European Regional Development Fund and St. Helens Council, St Helens Chamber’s Business Growth Programme is designed to help businesses operating in the B2B sector who want to grow and take on new staff, but are finding obstacles in their way. It is part of the Liverpool City Region Integrated Business Support Project.

Following a free business diagnostic to identify any issues standing in the way of growth ambitions, the Chamber’s Business Advisers put together a bespoke action plan for the business.

Companies will then receive fully-funded advice and support from Chamber Business Advisers and specialist business consultants, offering practical solutions to achieve their goals and improve their competitiveness.

If your business employs less than 250 people trading on a business to business basis and you are looking to grow your workforce, explore new markets or win new business, contact Helen Morris at St Helens Chamber on 01744 742042 or email