Foundation of Duckworth
& Kent Ltd.
Duckworth & Kent was founded on the 30th January 1959 as a small
engineering company in the town of Hitchin, England. Shortly afterwards
the company moved to the neighbouring town of Baldock, where it has
remained to the present day. During the 1960's Duckworth and Kent was
primarily involved in high-precision contract engineering work for the
UK Ministry of Defence.
Introduction to Ophthalmic Surgery
In 1968 a London-based Consultant Eye Surgeon, approached the company
regarding it's assistance in the manufacture of surgical instruments for
cataract operations. This new development within the company remained
relatively small scale until 1972. Following a meeting with a
metallurgist, the company was advised to consider titanium alloy as the
raw material, as used in the aerospace industry. It wasn't long before
Duckworth & Kent saw the substantial advantages of this material and
moved away from manufacturing surgical instruments in stainless steel.
The new alloy proved to be very well suited to the requirements for
surgical instrumentation, offering advantages such as no oxidation,
relatively lightweight and yet extremely durable.
Expansion into the Surgical Arena
In 1983 the company devoted more resources into the manufacture of
surgical instruments, not only for ophthalmic surgery, but also for the
neurosurgical and ear, nose and throat specialties. Duckworth & Kent
became an independent surgical instrument manufacturer, subcontracting
for well-known companies.
In 1988 Duckworth and Kent ventured further into the arena by producing
its own label instrumentation. Subsequently, Duckworth and Kent has
enhanced its knowledge and gained considerable experience in the field
of ophthalmic surgical instruments, such that it now markets and
distributes its own range on a world-wide basis.
The Present Day
The workforce continues to expand and diversify as the need arises,
whether it be in design, manufacturing, sales
or marketing. The
ophthalmic product range now extends to over 1,200 instruments and
continues to grow to meet the needs of this ever-advancing surgical
specialty. As a consequence, Duckworth & Kent is now the leading
manufacturer of high quality titanium ophthalmic surgical instruments.