Where it all began…

I vividly remember the first day of WPR. It was 2 January 1992 and I was sharing a desk in the Jewellery Quarter, but I had a strong vision and absolute determination that I would make WPR (or Willoughby Public Relations as it was then) the best national communications consultancy at the heart of the country. 

We secured some fantastic brands in our first year, from household names such as Kellogg’s to the market-leading Triton Showers – a wonderful client which WPR is proud to still be working with three decades later.

The country was in recession in January 1992 and many contacts said I should have named the agency ‘Brave PR’. Like many businesses, we have had to make brave decisions over the years, adapting our services to meet the changing needs of our clients, technology and lifestyle habits.

WPR’s success is down to the great team we have been fortunate to attract over the years. It has always been about “people-first communications”: brilliant, hard-working people creating results-driven, award-winning campaigns. The success breeds success, with gold medal campaigns attracting some of the industry’s most talented people.

Our evolution has been down to the whole team, including the amazing leadership team. Jane and Jo, managing director and client experience director, have been loyal to WPR for more than two decades. They have provided consistent, astute guidance and their flair has helped to create the special culture and recognition that WPR has gained over the years.

Along the way, we’ve had a lot of fun, laughs and memorable moments. I am so proud of how the agency I dreamed of has grown up, taken on everyone else’s vision and, through teamwork, is leading the way in communications, PR and social media.

Thanks so much to all the current team and clients, and also to those who have played a role in our success over the past 30 years.

Julia Willoughby
Founder and Director

Ready for the future…

Jane and Julia

When Julia and I first discussed me becoming managing director of WPR 16 years ago, it really was a dream come true. This year, as well as celebrating WPR’s 30th anniversary, I’m marking 25 years at the agency and it is an understatement to say the time has flown. Having joined straight from university, I always said I’d leave the day I woke up and didn’t feel excited about going to work: that day has never come.

Julia created a fantastic foundation on which to build this amazing agency. Central to her philosophy was the certainty that when you look after your people well, they look after your clients well and deliver their best work. In our 30th year, the truth of this remains at our core and the results speak for themselves through the world-class, award-winning campaigns we produce and with team and client retention rates far above the industry averages.

We have an exciting year ahead as we mark this milestone and look forward to sharing news throughout 2022. But for now, I’d like to say a huge thank-you to everyone who has supported us or helped us on our journey over the past 30 years, be they team members, clients, suppliers, partners, family or friends. There are countless people who have contributed to making WPR the agency it is today – those who are still with us and those who have moved on – and I could not be prouder or more grateful.

Jane Ainsworth
Managing Director