On & Around the Street

Sloane Street Portrait: John Timms, Personalisation Stamper At Smythson

John Timms, Smythson

Describe your perfect day on Sloane Street…

A sunny day with all the hustle and bustle of the Street going on outside, with big red London buses and taxi’s pulling up outside the Smythson store. Inside you have the calm atmosphere, customers use it as a refuge, a place to escape. Time passes at a more leisurely pace, which I like. You can’t rush what I do; you need to be able to concentrate. But I love to hear everything that is going on outside.

What is the best thing about your job?

Meeting new people every day. Some might be locals from the Sloane Street area, others may be tourists visiting the area. I like the mixture, it is what makes this part of London so unique.

What’s the best thing about working on Sloane Street?

The location. At one end of Sloane Street you have Hyde Park and, at the other end, you have the Thames.

Best kept secret on Sloane Street?

The restaurant views at Peter Jones. It has the most amazing views over the rooftops of London – it makes me smile every time.

Tell us your favourite Sloane Street memory…

It was earlier this year during the Chelsea Flower Show. I left the store one evening, everything as it should be. The next morning, I came into work and I was greeted by a giant floral giraffe at the entrance to the store.There are few jobs where that happen to you. The months after Christmas are my favourite time of year because the area comes alive with plants and feels almost magical. All the local businesses take part in Chelsea in Bloom.

Best place to have lunch?

Comptoir Poilâne, just of Cadogan Gardens, for the sandwich connoisseur.

Best place to have a drink? 

I’m a pub man so for me its swift one at the Antelope, behind the Cadogan Hall. It’s a classic London pub.

Describe Sloane Street in three words…

Magical at Christmas.

What is the accessory every gentleman should own and why?

A large leather wallet because women love them.

What is the mark of a true gentleman?

A man who offers his seat to a lady on the Tube or bus regardless of their age. It is the only modern example of chivalry left.

When personalising a product, what should one consider?

What the initials might spell out! Also, it is very important to consider where on the item the personalisation should be, it has to be pleasing to the eye.

Visit John at Smythson, 141-142 Sloane St, SW1X 9AY.

John Timms, Smythson
John Timms, Smythson