I was recently contacted by photographer Steve Lancefield, who is in the process of visiting various British factories and took these of the Alfred Sargent factory in Rushden, Northampton. I’ve visited many in Northampton myself, but never Sargents. And while Goodyear machines don’t really change, I loved the personal and colour shots Steve took. 

Looking forward to the book, Steve.

Steve wishes to thank Chay Cooper for his hospitality

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Do the locals to a greater degree than the average UK person wear classic quality shoes in Northampton? Any observations? /Håkan in Sweden


You might think they would, but I live in Northampton, and the answer is no. Most of the factories have factory shops where one may buy heavily discounted unsold stock (substandard, or sample shoes etc) but most of the customers are from London or abroad.


Hi Simon, this glimse at AS’s factory is a good thing, as you now and then do. As a matter of fact, it’s the best way to give your readers an idea of the current state of British craftsmanship. It happens that Steve is a very good photograph with an excellent sense of perspective! Now, as to AS, I have got the opportunity to see few pairs creamed and waxed waiting to be collected by their owners at Valmour’s (Saphir) official retailer in Paris ( 4 rue Lucien Sampaix in the 4th arrondissement). Absolutely exquisite!Since then, I have set my sight on a pair of burgundy Warwick, the single monk strap of the Handgrade line!