West Riding Textiles and the Casuals

In 1851 one third of the males and 27% of women of Huddersfield worked in textiles. Huddersfield textile firms were particularly active, adapting to changes in fashion and the possibilities of new raw materials and techniques, mostly for the home market. W Riding also took advantage of recovered wool as a raw material. It was cheaper, and as such was a buffer against rising wool prices. The blends of fibres could be changed quickly to stabilise costs and prices with only a slight change in quality. Recovered wool also cut down the need for dyeing.

Wool merchant

Edward Haigh (wool) Ltd (R Sutcliffe)

Spinning, scouring, weaving

1860 spinning mill at Jackson Bridge, producing fancy woollens by 1910 W Haigh (FA Dawson)

1873 Jarmain & Sons Ltd, George Jarmain founded a carbonising and bleaching business in Kirkheaton (WAC Johnson)

1873 James Learoyd & Sons, high class plain and fancy woollens at Town Lane Mill, Leeds Road, moving to Trafalgar Mills in 1896 (G Overton, Learoyd)

1888 William Lawton was spinning yarn at Paddock Mill. By 1910 the mill was owned by Taylor, Livesey & Co Ltd (A Shires)

1871 Shires & Co started at George St Mill (G Shires)

Wheatleys (J Bell, D Bell)

Lidell & Brierley Ltd

Pat Martins (P Milnes)

Blamires (J Batt)

Spinners  Z Hinchliffe (G Wilby, J Hinchliffe)

Cotton’s of Slaithwaite, reclaimed waste (DW Eastwood)

Supporting industries

1840 James Robinson & Co Ltd natural dyestuffs in competition with synthetics (J Abbey)

1904 Thomas Broadbent & Sons Ltd,  hydroextractors (Gordon Cran)

1904 Brook Motors electric drives for textile machinery (SB Fielding)

1860s Brown’s manufactured gears.

1843 Hopkinsons founded Boiler making valves and boiler fittings (PK Walker)

1853 WC Holmes (later Holset, now Cummings) gas plant manufacture was linked to the activities of the local chemical industry (JM Henshaw)

Whiteleys, mule and loom manufacture (J Charlesworth)

P & C Garnett’s card manufacture (R Reynolds)

James Holdsworth & Bros Ltd, card manufacture (J Holdsworth)

Sydney Clifford Ltd, paper tubes (PA Haigh, J Clifford)



other professions     teacher, architect, funeral director, printer, YEB, builder, doctor, caterer, greengrocer, banking, music shop,


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