Salt of the Earth – Working Class Heroes

Now Ulverston, in Cumbria, might not be as well known as Milan, Paris and New York for its fashion and stylish credentials. But there is a shop which could very much challenge your preconceptions of this Northern English Town.

Working Class Heroes was founded in 2006 by Thomas Bowden. The initial idea was to sell a range of skate and street clothing from all around the globe to the good people of Cumbria, from his tiny shop in a shady looking alleyway. Since 2006 the company has moved to a bigger, better, less creepy location, sweeping up new brands, stories and people along the way and thanks to the information superhighway has made the delights of this proverbial Aladdin‘s Cave available to folk much further afield then Ulverston, and I’m not Stockport or Huddersfield.

Now, Thomas is a natural born creative, visionary and dreamer, much need in these times we currently live. The premise behind his inspiration comes from a much more historic, almost biblical notion dating back to the second half of the 19th century when the upper classes dress down to go out, the working class dress up. Ever since this,

Dating back to the second half of the 19th century, and ever since, sub-cultures have been created and driven almost exclusively by those in the working class communities. Starting with the Scuttlers of Manchester in the 1870’s and their monotony towards life in the slums, advancing through to the Teddy Boys, Mods and Rockers era of the 50’s, through to the Punk and Skin scenes, Ska, Reggae, the 80’s and 90’s skate scene, right up to today’s contemporary minimalism. They were all the brainchild of those fighting for an identity – an identity that correlates conclusively with fashion – so it makes sense to call these people heroes.

Wow, and wow is right as Working Class Heroes has developed and evolved way beyond that little back street shop in 2006. Their website is a visual delight of

footwear, clothing and homeware comprised of a brand mix that appeals to not other the guys behind it. Not one that follows a particular genre or alignment, but one that they feel goes together, blurring the lines between distinctions and classifications in order to create something beautiful. 

So yes you don’t have to pay a pilgrimage to Ulverston to visit this Mecca. Simply log onto

to witness a platfora of carefully selected brands including from Adidas to Stussy and Patagonia to Norse Projects.


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