At The Forefront Of British Watchmaking – Bremont

30 Dec, 2023 Chat 0
At The Forefront Of British Watchmaking – Bremont

In the world of horology, Swiss and German brands have long been revered as the ultimate guardians of precision, luxury, and craftsmanship. While Swiss brands like Patek Philippe and Audemars Piguet have long conquered the realm of high-luxury watchmaking, German houses like A. Lange & Söhne and Junghans have become known for their meticulous engineering. But, even amidst this seemingly impenetrable wall created by such brands, British watchmaking has slowly but surely begun to rear its head. And among the brands heading this new change is Bremont.

Bremont has emerged as a shining beacon, illuminating the path for British watchmaking’s revival. With an unwavering commitment to quality, innovation, and a deep reverence for tradition, Bremont has captured the imagination of watch enthusiasts worldwide. This British watchmaking luminary has not merely strived to catch up with the Swiss and Germans; instead, it has carved a unique niche in the industry, combining a passion for adventure, a dedication to heritage, and a relentless pursuit of excellence.

Taking Flight: The Inspiring History Of Bremont

The history of Bremont is a captivating tale of two brothers, Nick and Giles English, whose shared passion for aviation and watchmaking led them to establish a brand that would become a symbol of British horological excellence. The roots of the brand were sown due to the immense love that their father, RAF veteran Dr Euan English, held for mechanical watches. However, the story truly begins with a tragic incident in 1995 when Nick, along with his father, was involved in a plane crash while practising formations for an air show. While Nick English sustained severe injuries, his father passed away in the accident.

After a long period of recovery, Nick, along with Giles, realised the alarming precariousness of life. Thus, they took it upon themselves to do something meaningful and impactful with their lives. They took over their father’s historical aircraft repair company. It not only allowed them to pay homage to their father’s memory but also gave them a platform to explore their love for craftsmanship and engineering precision.

Bremont co-founders, Nick and Giles English
Bremont co-founders, Nick and Giles English (Picture credit: Bremont)

Inspiration Behind The Name “Bremont”

In 2002, Bremont was born! And the story of how it came to be known as Bremont is remarkable in itself. Around three years after losing their father to the tragic accident, the brothers were flying across France in a 1930s biplane when they got stuck in inclement weather. Unable to fly any further, the brothers were forced to land in a pea field, belonging to the elderly farmer Antoine Bremont.

Offering his help to the lost brothers and opening his house to them to take refuge in till the weather cleared, the brothers soon discovered that Antoine was a former wartime pilot and shared the same love for vintage machinery and carriage clocks. Feeling a likeness between this elderly French man and their father, the brothers were incredibly moved by the man’s kindness and passion. They also realised a brand named after their family name of “English” would not have the impact they wanted. In addition, their admiration for the farmer, who felt very much like their late father, compelled them to christen their company with the name Bremont.

Establishing The Brand Identity

Owing to the brothers’ love for craftsmanship and excellence in mechanical devices, the brand was committed to crafting timepieces of the highest quality from the outset. It adopted a distinctive approach that would set Bremont apart in the industry. While the absence of many competitors in the domestic market gave the brand an edge, it did not take that for granted. Therefore, all Bremont watches underwent rigorous tests to ensure unparalleled accuracy and precision for five years before the company launched its first collection in 2007.

The ALT-1 and Martin Baker watches are two of the most significant series that the maison launched in 2007. These watches are considered some of the best crafted by the brand. Also, it is evident from the fact that some models are much-coveted and considered bestsellers even now, 16 years since their launch.

Bremont watches
The brand's commitment to pushing the limits is realised by ensuring all Bremont watches undergo rigorous tests, promising unparalleled accuracy and precision (Picture credit: Bremont)

Memorable Partnerships

One of the reasons why Bremont has become such a memorable brand is due to the incredible number of partnerships it has been involved with over the years. These partnerships have been with various brands and icons of impressive British engineering, including Martin Baker, Jaguar, Rolls-Royce Aerospace, British Airways, and Williams Racing. It has also been the official timing partner of a number of sporting events, both in the UK and globally, including The America’s Cup, England Rugby, and Isle of Man TT.

Apart from this, the young brand has also been privy to a number of exclusive military contracts and partnerships, such as with the Ministry of Defense (MoD). The dedicated Bremont Military and Special Projects Division worked with the MoD, leading to the launch of the impeccable collection, Bremont Armed Forces. Owing to the level of quality and excellence maintained, it has also become the only atelier with express permission to feature the insignia of the Royal Air Force, Royal Navy, and British Army on its watches.

Martin Baker
One of Bremont's most memorable partnerships is with Martin Baker, a company responsible for equipping 70% of the world's air forces with fighter ejection seat technology (Picture credit: Bremont)

Bremont’s Horological Odyssey: A Look At Their Distinctive Creations

Bremont Armed Forces Broadsword

Bremont Armed Forces Broadsword
Bremont Armed Forces Broadsword is a powerful homage to a defining era in military history as it draws inspiration from the infamous The Dirty Dozen watches
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The Bremont Armed Forces Broadsword is a powerful homage to a defining era in military history. In the 1940s, during World War II, the British Ministry of Defence sought to equip army personnel with new watches, and their vision was clear. These timepieces should embody simplicity, featuring three-hand timekeeping and legible markers. This call to action led to an iconic collaboration with 12 Swiss manufacturers, including esteemed names like Omega, Jaeger-LeCoultre, and Longines, to produce watches that meet the stringent requirements. Known as ‘The Dirty Dozen,’ these watches found their way to army personnel by 1945.

Bremont Broadsword
Bremont Broadsword watches
Bremont watches

Fast forward to 2019, Bremont embarked on a historic partnership with the Ministry of Defence, earning the distinction of being the sole luxury watch manufacturer authorised to proudly feature the insignia of all three branches of the British military on their products. Showcasing this legacy, the declaration of Her Majesty’s Armed Forces (HMAF) is proudly put on display at 12 o’clock, while the caseback features emblems of all the HMAF components. The automatic Calibre 11 1/2”’ BE-95-2AV provides a reliable 38-hour power reserve that lets you go on any adventure with confidence. The matte dial offers exceptional clarity in time telling, while the durable 40mm case is robust enough to accompany you on your adventures. Completing the military-inspired look is the canvas strap, which also adds to the comfort of wearing it.

Bremont Altitude U-2

The Bremont Altitude U-2 bears a proud military heritage stemming from the renowned success of the Bremont military air-crew watch, developed in close collaboration with Martin-Baker. Crafted with precision and purpose, the U-2 boasts a robust exterior, under which lies a modified calibre 11 ½”’ BE-36AE, an automatic chronometer equipped with 25 jewels. The U-2 excels in its essential functions, displaying hours, minutes, and seconds on the blue sunray dial, with the added convenience of a date and day indicator at three o’clock. Its case, constructed from hardened stainless steel, embodies durability. Furthermore, the timepiece features a patented inner bi-directional Roto-Click bezel operated by the crown at four o’clock.

Bremont Altitude U-2
The Bremont Altitude U-2 bears a proud military heritage stemming from the renowned success of the Bremont military air-crew watch, developed in close collaboration with Martin-Baker
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Bremont AIRCO Mach 2 Anthracite

The AIRCO Mach 2 pays homage to the ‘Aircraft Manufacturing Company Limited,’ one of the earliest British military aircraft manufacturers. It comes with a 40mm polished case fitted with a sapphire crystal back and an anthracite-coloured dial. Powering this watch is the Bremont Calibre 11 ½”’ BE-92AE, with 38 hours of power reserve, a Glucydur balance, an Anachron balance spring, and a Nivaflex 1 mainspring. In short, the Bremont Airco Mach 2 Anthracite is the epitome of a modern officer’s dress watch, seamlessly blending utilitarian practicality with evening elegance.

AIRCO Mach 2
The AIRCO Mach 2 pays homage to the Aircraft Manufacturing Company Limited and comes with a 40mm polished case fitted with a sapphire crystal back and an anthracite-coloured dial

Bremont MBII

The MBII proudly carries the legacy of Martin-Baker, a company responsible for equipping 70% of the world’s air forces with fighter ejection seat technology. To uphold the same standards that Martin-Baker maintains in its patented technology, this timepiece is also designed to be at par with the same. More specifically, the goal behind the timepiece was to craft a “definitive aviation chronometre,” making it capable of actually withstanding the rigorous ejection seat test program by Martin-Baker. The attention to detail makes experts consider the watch to be “overbuilt,” with superior functionalities like shock protection protecting the mechanism within. While the predecessor MBI, boasting much of similar functionalities, is curated for pilots only, this version is the more accessible one, catered simply to those who love engineered designs.

Bremont Altitude MBII
The MBII proudly carries the legacy of Martin-Baker, featuring a stainless steel case with the patented Trip-Tick construction and the patented internal Roto-Click bezel
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While the mechanism does make it impressive, the design matches right up against it with its spectacular form. The stainless steel case, featuring Bremont’s patented Trip-Tick construction, commands attention on the wrist. This case also houses Bremont’s patented internal Roto-Click bezel, conveniently operated via the crown at four o’clock. Under the hood, the MBII is driven by Bremont’s calibre BE-36AE, a self-winding movement with a 42-hour power reserve and a GMT complication.

Bremont MBII
Bremont MBII watches
Bremont watches
 MBII watches
The goal behind creating the watch was to craft a “definitive aviation chronometre,” making it capable of actually withstanding the rigorous ejection seat test program by Martin-Baker

Bremont Jaguar MKIII

The Bremont and Jaguar collaboration has been a much-decorated one. Back in 2010, Bremont was the one behind the unique, analogue clock on the dashboard of the then-newly launched Jaguar C-X75. The clock was crafted to keep in tune with the vision of the impressive 778 horsepower car, which boasted a 205 mph performance. And this was the start of a glorious partnership.

Prior to the MKIII, the partnership saw the launch of the MKI and MKII as well. While the MKI paid tribute to vintage motorsport with its dashboard-inspired dial, the MKII added to the same vibes with its impressive Calibre 13 ¼”’ BE-50AE automatic movement. The culmination of these previous two models is the Bremont Jaguar MKIII.

Bremont and Jaguar collaboration
Bremont Jaguar MKIII comes from the much-decorated collaboration between Bremont and Jaguar, which has also seen development of timepieces like MKI and MKII

It is powered by a modified calibre 11 ½”’ BE-36AE automatic chronometer. With a 38-hour power reserve, this watch is not just a tribute to motorsport; it’s a finely crafted timepiece that embodies the spirit of British engineering and the elegance of the E-Type Jaguar.


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