Northampton has long been the shoe manufacturing capital of England. Although the industry is a shadow of its former self (in 1950, the town boasted 50 shoemaking firms, whereas now there are five) its reputation for quality and for upholding the proud traditions of English footwear are undiminished. Nowhere are these traditions of timeless style and enduring substance more lovingly nurtured than at Crockett & Jones, whose Victorian factory looms over the town’s redbrick terraces.
Crockett & Jones is a family-owned and run company. Managing director, Jonathan Jones, has been in the saddle since 1980 and seven members of the family now help to run the business, dealing with everything from keeping the factory lifts working, to creating new patterns and lasts, to opening new retail stores. Family ownership and management encourages long-term thinking, releasing the company from the demands of short-term profit. Crockett & Jones is in the fortunate position of being completely in charge of its own destiny.
The label ‘Made in Northampton, England’ continues to give consumers across the world confidence in traditional methods and a guarantee of superb quality
In October 2019 Crockett & Jones opened a second retail store in New York City. The existing shop, which is on 55th Street opposite the famous St Regis Hotel, has been trading well for many years. The new shop is to be found in Manhattan’s trendy Soho, where it will attract new disciples to the Crockett & Jones brand.
2020 may also herald the start of Crockett & Jones’s venture into e-commerce. Surprising as it may seem in 2019, the company has not hitherto embraced online sales, as the factory has been at maximum capacity for ten years. With the factory in Northampton working more efficiently, offering a steady increase in output, Crockett & Jones is looking forward to offering a high quality e-commerce service for its growing and loyal customer base who might not be able to visit a Crockett & Jones retail store.