TWO companies are teaming up in an effort to find the oldest family firms in Essex.

Rickard Luckin has teamed up with Family Business United to find the oldest family firms across the county.

They are hoping to shine a light on Essex’s family-owned businesses and celebrate their contribution to both the economy and wider community.

Across the county, there are lots of businesses which fit the description, which are pillars of their area.

Williams & Griffin, now Fenwick, is a huge staple family business in Colchester High Street.

Known affectionately in the town as “Willie Gees” first appeared in 1963, when ironmonger and agricultural machinery business HE Williams & Co merged with H L Griffin & Co.

Fenwick bought the store in 2008 and at the time, said it planned to keep the name – a fixture on the High Street for more than 50 years.

In 2015, the name officially changed after a large development, but its family history did not.

Echo: Ann and Dennis pictured outside Hume'sAnn and Dennis pictured outside Hume's

Another popular classic is Wilkin and Sons, in Tiptree, which has been around since 1885.

The company sells preserves, marmalades, jams, and more, and Peter Wilkin, the great-grandson of the founder, remains an integral part of the business today.

In Halstead, the Hume's bakery is a staple of the High Street and part of the town’s history.

Opened by couple Dennis and Ann Hume, in 1960, it has seen plenty of success over the years and received the Essex Baker of Year crown in 2010.

The business is now jointly run by their children Wendy, Adrian and Judith.

Echo: Peter Wilkin outside the Wilkin and Sons factoryPeter Wilkin outside the Wilkin and Sons factory

On the campaign, founder and chief executive officer of Family Business United Paul Andrews said: “We already know of plenty of long-standing family firms across Essex that have successfully passed down through the generations but are now seeking to compile a list of the oldest in the county.

“This is a great way to showcase the longevity of the sector and to highlight the contribution family firms have made for so many years too.

“We know that family firms are at the heart of communities across Essex and want to make sure that as many are represented as possible.”

To take part in the campaign, visit and complete the form.