The Original brand Gilbert is derived from William Gilbert (1799-1877) who had a boot and shoemakers shop in the high street next to Rugby School and started making rugby balls for the school out of hand stitched, four-panel, leather casings and real pigs' bladders.
Gilbert passed through the control of 3 different owners through the 1980's and 90's. During this time, the brand embraced and perfected the use of new synthetic technologies.
In the 1990's Gilbert launched their first ever netball range and has rapidly grown to be one of the most established netball brands worldwide.
Under Gray’s ownership, Gilbert continues to lead the way in ball technology and design, and to maintain the high standards set by James Gilbert over 180 years ago. Gilbert has adapted its un-rivalled ball engineering experience to Netball, thus producing the best-performing patented grip pattern available and with the advent of new materials, Gilbert has perfected the use of new synthetic technologies as seen with the IFNA ball and the Suncorp Super Netball Ball.
The continued evolution of Gilbert's netball match ball technology has ensured that it has maintained its position as market leader.
Gilbert prides itself on having an experienced marketing team - including current England captain Geva Mentor - have now been recruited to ensure that Gilbert are in the very best position to meet the challenges presented in apparel, graphics and ball development and to lead the way in this exciting new era of Gilbert Netball products.