Our history

Games Workshop is the largest and the most successful hobby miniatures company in the world. Our major brands are Warhammer and Warhammer 40,000. In addition, we hold a licence for The Lord of the Rings/the Hobbit tabletop battle game. At its core the hobby is all about our amazing miniatures and collecting, modelling, painting  and playing games with armies of them are activities enjoyed by millions of adherents all across the world.

Who we are

Games Workshop began its life in the UK but now has direct sales operations in the UK, the United States, Australia, China and Japan. With around 70% of sales coming from outside of the UK, we are truly international.

What we do

The most important thing we do is design, make and sell fantastical miniature soldiers and associated models. To that end we also design, make and sell books and accessories of extraordinary variety to facilitate the many different hobby activities. Our vast range of plastic and resin kits. painting guides, rulebooks and novels are the foundation of an almost infinite hobby. Our design centre is in Nottingham and we have manufacturing and distribution facilities in Nottingham and distribution centres in Memphis, Tennessee and Sydney, Australia.

Games Workshop is a vertically integrated business, retaining control over every aspect of design, manufacture and distribution of our models and rulebooks. Products are sold through our own chain of over 400 retail stores in the UK, USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, China, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, the Netherlands, Eire, Belgium, Austria, Poland, Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Finland. We also sell products through more than 4,000 other hobby, game and toy shops around the world. These outlets are complemented by our mail order and online specialist sales businesses.

How it all began

Games Workshop was founded more than 30 years ago by three game fanatics who began selling handmade, classic wooden games from their homes in London. They went on to develop a chain of general games shops. In 1981 Games Workshop helped to found Citadel Miniatures Limited, a manufacturer of metal miniatures based at Newark-on-Trent, in Nottinghamshire. A few years later the company moved closer to Nottingham and began to develop and expand, producing a wealth of miniatures, kits and books under the Games Workshop name.

Tom Kirby, the Group’s Chairman, joined us in 1986 as General Manager. In December 1991, Tom led a management buy-out and in September 1994 the company was floated on the London Stock Exchange. In October 1997, all UK based operations were relocated to the current HQ in Lenton, Nottingham.

As well as helping to consolidate our UK businesses, the move provided Games Workshop with space to create Warhammer World, our premier events centre. These new facilities have allowed the UK business to stage increasing numbers of special events devoted to all the different hobby activities. Today Lenton is a vibrant and exciting hobby base and has become a place of pilgrimage for GW enthusiasts from around the world.