about the company…
Band International was founded in the 1980’s by Will Pakenham-Walsh and Mike Davey. In the early 1990’s the company relocated to the Isle of Wight, and Will was joined by Maggie Cooke. Maggie and Will continued to run Band together for the next 20 years.
Maggie joined Band with many years of experience in management systems and accounts, working for a variety of companies and local government, as well as running her own accounting business. She and Will perfectly complemented one another; whilst Will roamed the country spreading goodwill and a degree of chaos, Maggie made sense of the resulting paper chase and kept a calm eye on proceedings. She has an almost encyclopaedic knowledge of the business, its customers and suppliers. Now that her children have at least technically left home, Maggie divides her spare time between her four Border Collies and her long suffering husband, Peter, who now manages the transport and logistical side of the business.
Many customers will remember Ro Pakenham-Walsh with affection; Will’s eldest daughter, Ro had worked in the events industry for several years, and when she joined the team at Band in 2009 it was a strong possibility that she would eventually take over the reins, leaving Will to take a back seat. However, she decided that her true vocation lay in education, so after a return to university, she took up her first teaching position and is very happy encouraging her young charges to embrace an active lifestyle.
Will was joined by Maggie’s sister Cathy, who worked closely with Will to understand the ethos and technical side of the business. Cathy brought her many years of experience in purchasing, gained whilst working in the upper echelons of several of the country’s leading defence and aviation industries. Her knowledge of contract law among other gems has proved invaluable. Cathy lives with her husband Mike and two boisterous Airedale Terriers named Polly and Frieda. She is a keen gardener and also enjoys spending time in France.
Always known and loved by his customers as a free spirit, Will decided in 2014 that the call of the hills and beaches was too strong, and that he would hang up his mobile phone for good, and take to the roads in a converted VW named Doris. After several years of retirement, exploring, arranging his own daughter’s weddings (using Band chairs, of course) and enjoying his new grandchildren, Will was sadly diagnosed with cancer, and passed away peacefully in August of 2019.
Will was both an inspiration and a true friend to all of us here at Band and we miss him a great deal. His unique and strictly ethical way of conducting his business made him very many friends among both his customers and his suppliers.