Suzie Fletcher is back on our screens for another season of The Repair Shop this summer.
From working with a top restoration firm in the States to the leafy location where The Repair Shop is filmed, Suzie Fletcher has been on quite a journey throughout her career. On the show alone, she’s wowed us so far with some incredible restorations and repairs.
Much like its sister show, The Bidding Room, The Repair Shop breathes new leases of life into family heirlooms and antique pieces of art and design. So who is Suzie Fletcher? This is what you need to know about this lead expert on the show that’s hosted by Jay Blades.
Who is Suzie Fletcher?
Suzie Fletcher is an expert on BBC One’s The Repair Shop, specialising in leather and saddles.
As one of The Repair Shop cast members, Suzie quickly became a fan favourite after first appearing on series 2 of the show. Now in season 6, Suzie has worked on everything leather-related on the show, from a bespoke rocking horse to a Louis Vuitton steamer trunk.
Originally from Oxfordshire, Suzie has been in the leather industry for over 40 years.
“I have been nuts about horses ever since I can remember and can vividly recall from a very young age making saddles and bridles for my rocking horse and Cindy horse,” she said in an interview with the BBC earlier this year.
“With the influence of my mother, who was very skilled in designing and making clothes and my father being a watch maker, it’s no surprise I found a way to combine my interests in design and horses to become a saddle maker.”
Suzie started her training to become a saddler in the mid 1970’s. Originally, she was under the instruction of Ken Langford, before going to Cordwainers College in London. She finished her training as a Master Saddler before moving to Colorado in the US.
She says that among the repairs she’s finished on the show, Ralph the Rhino was a real favourite.
“But really the one that gets me is Chris Adams and his grandfathers’ helmet and spurs. He served in both wars and his helmet had a dent where a piece of shrapnel had been deflected. His story is one of so many that have not been shared, I was very proud to help share this one.”
And a dream repair for Suzie would be saddle from the early 1900s. She said, “possibly a military or a horse drawn coach of some style.”
How old is Suzie Fletcher?
With some quick maths, it’s easy to work out that Suzie is around 60 years old in 2021. However, Suzie has never personally confirmed her age.
She has mentioned starting work as a saddler aged just 14 in 1975. This would place her in her late 50s or early 60s.
Are Suzie and Steve Fletcher twins?
The two experts are brother and sister but they are not twins. Steve, aged 57 years old, is Suzie’s younger brother by about three years.
It was Steve that actually scored Suzie a spot on The Repair Shop. And from America to the Sussex countryside where The Repair Shop is filmed, it was certainly a big move.
“I lived in America for many years but after the loss of my husband I decided to return home to the UK,” she said. “While making arrangements to move home my brother Steve would Skype me regularly as he always did and told me he was involved in this new BBC TV show called The Repair Shop.”
Speaking about the decision to join the show after some initial hesitation, she said, “I’m so happy I did [agree to be on the show] as this is one of the most enjoyable things I’ve ever been involved with. It’s also helped me through some very dark days.”
Steve followed in his father’s footsteps. He mastered the craft of clock making and repairs, which is also the skill he leads on The Repair Shop.
The Repair Shop is just one of the excellent shows to come back on telly this summer. Vigil, which is filmed in Scotland, is also on BBC One and a recent drama starring Suranne Jones. While Ridley Road, coming to the channel in October, is set to be the drama to have us hooked for autumn.
Catch up on all episodes of The Repair Shop on BBC iPlayer.