Our story

To own a Charles Owen helmet is to own not only a part of equestrian history, but its future.

Four generations

World famous for raising the bar in safety, Charles Owen is a leading British manufacturer of riding helmets with a history dating back over 110 years.

When Charles Owen himself founded the company in 1911, his mission was to make products ‘for a safer world’.

The company has remained within the same family for four generations, today under the direction of founder Charles Owen’s great-grandson.

A brief history

The early days revolved around manufacturing military helmets for the British Army. The company transitioned into the equestrian market 17 years later with racing helmets for jockeys and quickly established itself as the gold standard for safety.

Charles Owen was involved in creating the very first equestrian helmet safety standard, and in 1983 the company created the first dual-standard riding helmet in answer to Pony Club’s demand for safer riding gear.

One year later, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II awarded Charles Owen the Royal Warrant as protective headgear supplier to the Royal Mews at Buckingham Palace.

From the first patent granted in 1924 to improve ventilation and fit through the Microfit system found in all Charles Owen helmets today, the company has always prioritised correct and comfortable fit.

Today the company name is deeply ingrained within the global equestrian industry as a trusted brand known for safety, quality and prestige fashion.

Handmade in the UK

Each Charles Owen helmet is handmade by highly skilled technicians using the highest quality materials at our award winning, state-of-the-art factory in Great Britain.

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Royal Works

Our award winning facility is situated in Wrexham, North Wales.

Inside the huge space, the workforce is organised into small teams that create the products from start to finish. Quality is paramount when it comes to safety.

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Professor Roy Burek

The company and its worldwide reputation for the safety and quality of its products is indebted to the late Professor Roy Burek, who passed away in 2019.

The grandson of Charles Owen, Roy was dynamic in leading industry research, studying traumatic brain injury and setting new standards for safety technology.

Charles Owen’s design engineers continue to innovate and develop new exciting products using his research and expert knowledge.

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Founded in 1985, Airowear is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of equestrian body protectors. Superior design and technology more effectively protects the vital organs and ribs in a fall.

Every Airowear body protector is certified for every safety standard, a notable first for the industry. Charles Owen acquired Airowear in 2012.