Whereas most of these stories start with either an inspired young carver or a veteran leaving one of the big manufactures. Stanwell however a slightly different background Poul Nielsen has produced a range of wooden goods and with the outbreak of WWII he began making beech pipes. The English made briar smoked in Denmark became unobtainable during the war, as was Mediterranean briar. These pipes became popular with local smokers and Nielsen soon stopped producing other wooden goods.
At the end of the war, briar soon became available and Nielsen quickly moved to important material. During this time Danish pipes had no real history to call upon, so Poul changed not the only the companies identity, but eventually his own. Gone was the Nielsen name and Stanwell, complete with the Horse & Cart logo was born. Thanks to his history working with wood and mass productions, Poul realised with moulds and guides he could reproduce even the most complex of shapes and drive down the price.
All this technology and innovation was no good without designers, so Poul worked closely with some of Denmarks finest carvers to produce the designs. First came Sixten Ivarsson, who justifiably is seen as the father of Danish Makers. The factory was relocated to Borup in 1969, to be closer to Ivarsson and then it all started. The unique flare on traditional shapes and the now ironically Danish freehands help not only kick start the Stanwell story but also that of Danish pipe makers.
By working with artisan carvers and the mass production methods used by Nielsen, saw Stanwell offering pipes for a fraction of the price you would pay for a handmade version. This allowed beautiful and often complex shapes, be affordable to the masses. What began with Ivarsson designing soon expanded with a resurgence of Danish pipe making. Tom Eltang, Jess Chonowitsch, Poul Winslow, Anne Julie, Bang and Poul Ilsted have all worked for Stanwell over the years. This now leaves Stanwell with one of the most diverse range of factory made pipes in the world.
Later on his life, Nielsen changed his name to “Poul Stanwell” and is considered as a very important player in the creation of the Danish pipe market. While many of the artisanal carvers who worked with Poul mainly produce pipes in their own workshops, some still do new designs for Stanwell. In 2010 the Danish factory was closed and all production was moved to Italy, who over the years has become the largest pipe producing nation in Europe. Thanks to the systems used by Poul Stanwell has ensure that very little has changed since this switch and they still offer the best quality for the money today.