Crockett & Jones are a British institution and should be proud of this status. Founded in 1879 in, of course, Northampton, the true home of Great British footwear and the envy of the world over. Charles Jones and his brother-in-law, James Crockett, with a grant of £100 each from the Thomas White Trust ‘to encourage young men of good character in the towns of Northampton and Coventry to set up business on their own’.
The brand quickly established a factory with 20 employees where they concentrated on making men’s boots. The business was successful and expanded quite rapidly with more and more work being done in house. By the 1890’s the 2nd generation (Harry Crockett and Frank Jones) began to integrate new machinery invented by Charles Goodyear from the USA for stitching the uppers, welts and soles together. This made the process much easier, and faster, and gave rise to the name for the superior construction process that we continue to use today, called ‘Goodyear Welted’.
The name Crockett & Jones soon became associated with quality and innovation and in 1914 Their footwear was used for the 2nd time on a Shackleton Polar expedition, emphasising the excellent quality of the shoes and their construction. Plus, during the 2nd World War Crockett & Jones manufactured over a 1,000,000 pairs for the armed forces under instructions from the government to switch the majority of the production to military footwear, making officers’ shoes and boots for the army, navy and air force.
Moving more up to current times, in 2006 Philippa Jones, joined the family business as the 5th generation of the Jones family to work for the brand. The strong reputation of Crockett & Jones, which today sees stores in London, New York, Paris and Brussels, is built on solid foundations and a great ethos started many generations ago. The fact that the business remains in the hands of the family after more than 130 years ensures their shoes still retain the attention to detail, quality, comfort and durability that was the hallmark of their founders.