At Fleetwood Paints, we are Ireland’s leading brush and interior and exterior paint manufacturer since 1950. A family run and owned business, with our factory based in Virginia, co. Cavan, our paint is created and tested in Ireland and sold in stockists throughout Ireland and Northern Ireland.

Where it all began

1950’s Ireland was an era of austerity and resilience with a slight glimmer of optimism.

People learned to be resourceful and inventive, allowing nothing going to waste that could be used to preserve or create items for future use. One such visionary who saw an opportunity for business was Mr Doyle and his two sons Brian and Conor Doyle.

The early days

Our story dates back to early 1950 on Marlborough Street in Dublin’s City Centre when Mr. Doyle and his sons Brian and Conor perfected the art of making ferrules – the metal bands that hold brush bristles in place. The Doyle brothers bought the surplus metal cut-offs from tins of Jacobs Afternoon Tea biscuits and transformed the scrap metal into a thriving paintbrush business.

A brush with success

Fleetwood began to diversify. As demand and popularity of Fleetwood handmade brushes grew, Fleetwood moved into creating artists brushes and cosmetic brushes. By the mid 1950, the Doyles were well positioned to open their first paintbrush factory in Cabra, Dublin 7.

R&D pioneers

As Ireland entered 1960, the worldwide economic boom brought along international trade and industry to the country and so once again, the Doyles were able to expand.

The paintbrushes were sold in Ireland and abroad which then brought the business to a two-acre site in Inchicore, Dublin 8. Domestic sales were booming at this time and exports were totalling at more than half a million brushes. Fleetwood was one of the first companies in Ireland to invest in R&D and in the mid-1960s, Fleetwood took the then unusual step of hiring a chemist to develop fillers and wallpaper pastes. (The paste that emerged would ‘stay stuck when others give up’, as the advertising slogan had it.)

Keeping the ball rolling

We welcomed the seventies in style!
Fleetwood was the largest manufacturer and supplier of DIY products in Ireland, a position it still holds to this day. The Doyle brothers were experiencing such phenomenal success within the paint industry with their hand-crafted paint brushes, that they expanded once more! Virginia, co. Cavan rolled out the red carpet and our main factory was opened in 1972 to make paint rollers and assemble paint frames. Pictured here are some key players of Fleetwood Paints, at our Inchicore factory in 1979.

Combining brush with colour

A thought struck both Brian and Conor to dip their toes into paint in seventies. The brothers wanted a paint that would be worthy of the high standard of brushes they were producing and so they decided to make their own. The Doyles partnered with US paint giant Sherwin Williams in 1977. By using the combined technology of both companies, together they brought the first can of Fleetwood Paint off the production line on Friday 12th January 1979 in Virginia, co. Cavan.

The proof is in the paint

From the beginning, Brian and Conor Doyle had prided themselves on producing paint of superior quality using leading edge technology.

They loved colour and design and wanted to bring a high standard of manufacturing to the paint business in Ireland.

As a company, we continue to invest in R&D , with over 15% of our personnel actively involved in this dept, to ensure that we are achieving the superior quality in our paints which we are known for. It is the use of only the finest raw materials and acrylic resins that gives our colours the richness and depth that makes them truly unique. We rely on our experience and expertise to develop paints that are not only rich in colour, but rich in innovation.

The Fleetwood Paints Team

The people that make up Fleetwood Paints are an integral part to our story for without the continued dedication of our 130+ team of employees we would not be here in 2023 celebrating 73 years in business. We have 3rd generation of families in Fleetwood Paints, including Conor Doyle’s son Alex Doyle as Commercial Director of the company and have cast our net wider to include a well established interior design team.

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View Fleetwood Paints colours in real irish homes to help you with your next home decorating project Fleetwood instagram.