Our History

Engineering excellence for 150 years

In 1867 Joseph Stannah began engineering lifts and cranes for London’s dock yards. Five generations on, this family owned, British business still uses its engineering expertise to keep people and goods moving. Today the business sells passenger lifts, platform lifts, goods and service lifts, escalators, moving walkways, loading systems and stairlifts, alongside providing maintenance and repair services for all makes and models of lifts and stairlifts in the UK.

2017 is a year of celebration for Stannah. This year marks 150 years since Joseph Stannah founded the business back in 1867. A lot has happened since then – yet some things, like making life easier and more fulfilling for people and the Stannah family commitment to Joseph’s values of quality and integrity, remain unchanged.

A brief history of Stannah



Joseph Stannah began engineering lifts and cranes for London’s dockyards



Stannah was regularly advertising in The Times for cranes, lifts, patent pendulum donkey pumps and a southward high-speed 26hp engine.


The first of our nationwide network of service branches, focused on servicing and repair, opened in Eastbourne.


The first Maxilift passenger lifts are introduced; standardising the lift range while still allowing for bespoke production.



Stannah Microlifts was started – marketing dumbwaiter service lifts.



This year saw the introduction of goods lifts into our product portfolio, supplied primarily as back of house lifts for hotels, supermarkets, factories and convenience stores.



The unique FX structure is introduced, supplying a lift in its own structure, instead of using a conventional wall-mounted configuration.



The inclined wheelchair platform lift is introduced, providing easy wheelchair access over staircases.



Stannah Lifts begin manufacturing the Midilift platform lift range – over 5,000 have been sold since its introduction.


The groundbreaking MRC passenger lift is unveiled, one of the world’s first hydraulic machine-roomless lifts.



Our passenger lifts expertise increases with the introduction of the Xtralift range, offering greater capacity and suitability for more complex projects.



Lift Services division wins the contract to maintain all Network Rail lifts in the UK.

Escalators and moving walkways are added to our expanding product portfolio.



Stannah installs lifts and escalators into some major infrastructure projects: King’s Cross, Paddington, London Bridge, Reading, Nottingham and many more station upgrades.



The Stannah Piccolo is reinvented as a wall-mounted machinery directive lift.



Stannah Lift Services introduces Loading Systems into the portfolio of products they can maintain.


The company celebrates its 150th anniversary

Stannah has 11 branches nationwide

Stannah has operations across the globe

Stannah has installed over 45,000 commercial lift products

Stannah now has lifts in major train stations across the UK

Stannah has installed over 600,000 stairlifts

This is only part of our incredible story. If you would like to find out more please follow the link below.

Find out more

Latest news...

​Prehistoric Stannah Goods Lifts Discovered in Wiltshire!

17 Mar 2017

With a 150-year anniversary to celebrate, Stannah is hunting down its longest-serving lifts, with a prehistoric Trolleylift and Loadmaster in the Salisbury…

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From Apprentice to Lift Engineer: Dylan's Story

17 Mar 2017

The future of Stannah, our apprentices, the young men and women who will help us reach our next milestone.

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Short listed in Construction News Awards

15 Mar 2017

In their 150th anniversary year, Stannah has been selected as a finalist in the Specialist Contractor category of the 2017 Construction News Awards, making the…

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From Apprentice to Repair Engineer: Craig's Story

14 Mar 2017

The future of Stannah, our apprentices, the young men and women who will help us reach our next milestone.

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From Apprentice to Field Service Engineer: Richard's Story

09 Mar 2017

The future of Stannah, our apprentices, the young men and women who will help us reach our next milestone.

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Championing Apprenticeships for Over 100 Years

07 Mar 2017

As an independent, family-run British engineering business, Stannah has long been a champion of apprenticeships and it’s reassuring to see them back in the…

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​Joseph Stannah’s Rules of Life

02 Mar 2017

Our founder, Joseph Stannah was an exceptional engineer who turned his hand to everything from hoists and cranes to stuffing boxes for locomotives and lifts for…

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From Apprentice to Major Projects - Matt's Story

01 Mar 2017

​At Stannah, we put our success down to our people. The generations that have worked here in the last 150 years and the people today working across the Stannah…

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A potted history of Stannah

25 Jan 2017

Joseph Stannah founded the company in 1867 with a passion for engineering and an appetite for hard work. Fast-forward 150 years to 2017 and guess what? There…

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