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Why not come and see what we have in stock. We have ample free parking and a team of experienced staff to help you get exactly what you are looking for. With our paint tinting technology if it isn't on the shelf we will make it in less than five minutes.

H White and Son Ltd
42-44 Brockley Rise
Forest Hill
SE23 1LJ

Telephone: 020 8690 9040
Facsimile: 020 8690 7010

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Best price available with the best service

The passion to deliver a great service at a great price for every one of our customers remains at the heart of our business.

The business was founded in 1945 at a yard in Crooke Road, Deptford by Harry White. In those days H. White & Son were officially Sanitary Engineers (Plumbing & Drainage) who carried out repairs & maintenance for local people and the Council

After a spell in the Midland Bank (Rotherhithe) and then doing National Service, Martin’s dad Henry joined his father in the business. A few years later Henry decided to open a shop in an effort to get supplies for the business cheaper (In those early post war years price control was very strict so as to help industry recover from the war effort) This premises was at Honor Oak Park (1960) in SE London and was to become the first step into our current business. The business went on to become incorporated (Ltd) in 1963.

The second store followed at 352 Brockley Road (1963). At the time ‘Whites’ was quite unique in its trading style and could be classed as a forerunner of the now well established DIY store format. Regulation and Law changes over the years saw the abolition of Price Maintenance and competitive pricing was adopted by the Firm. A decision that certainly went down well with the locals and in (1966) another store in Crofton Park was taken over to further enhance the product offering.

Shortly after this the Honor Oak Store was closed down along with the original business of Repairs and Maintenance and all efforts were put into the remaining 2 stores which traded successfully for many years developing the DIY format. Martin White joined the business in 1975.

It became apparent in the late 70’s & early 80’s that larger businesses had noticed the rapid growth of the DIY industry and wanted ‘a piece of the action’ thus Tesco ‘Home & Ware’, ‘Payless DIY’ , ‘Texas’, ‘Fads’ etc were born, soon to be followed by amongst others, the now mighty B&Q. The superstore format seemed to appeal to the masses and left smaller firms like ours vulnerable. With hundreds of smaller Hardware/DIY businesses going under, something had to be done.

About us

Whites Trade Paints has been serving the needs of tradesmen and women in London and the South East for over 60 years.

And whilst many things have changed the business still remains a family one, with Martin White, grandson of the founder, at the head of the paint and painting supplies business.


The picture, we think, is circa 1950 and the first H White & Son delivery van. Prior to this the deliveries were made by handcart.


The Warehouse

A growing business

The Warehouse

In 1985 a decision was made to move more specifically into the Trade Market and 396 Brockley Rd was adapted & extended to this end. Having survived the ‘sheds’ and two recessions (just !) in the late 80’s & 90’s, the new format seemed to be paying off.

Due to ill health Henry had to retire in 1986 and Martin became the MD with his son Stuart joining the team in 1992.

With the rapid growth in volumes of paint & sundries, it soon became apparent that we would need to re-locate to larger premises so that we could maintain our high level of customer service. This resulted in the purchase of premises in Brockley Rise.(2001) A run down property that had housed various businesses since its conversion from an Esso Garage in 1979,was identified as being the ideal solution for Whites.

Plans were drawn up and the building was majorly remodelled & refurbished to become the purpose built premise it is today Whites relocated from the 396 Brockley Road store in 2004. In 2008 a decision was made to close the underperforming 352 Brockley Road shop. This was a tough decision to make for Martin due to the nostalgia and personal history associated with the premises but the changes in customer trends & buying patterns could not be ignored.

Stock lines that could be classed as ‘Bolt On’ for our core Decorators Merchant business (Hardware, Ironmongery etc) were transferred and Whites currently trade solely from the Brockley Rise store serving a customer base that spreads over most of SE England.

This 9,000 sq ft site, boasts almost 2,000 sq ft of showroom, dedicated parking and a team of 12 that has a combined experience which extends over some 150 years within the paint industry!

And whilst the business has evolved with the ever changing needs of consumers and the trade, one thing has remained constant. The desire to give a great level of customer service whilst maintaining competitive pricing.