Family History

The company was founded in April 1921 by Arthur Walter Midgley, the grandfather of Simon and Andrew and great-grandfather of James and William the present directors. A.W.Midgley had owned two large boot factories in Leeds employing nearly 400 people and producing thousands of pairs of army boots. He even produced a pair of boots for King Edward VII. A downturn in business in 1912 then caused the closure of both factories. In 1914 he came down to Bristol with hardly enough money to live on.

He led a very hand to mouth existence while trying to build up a leather factoring business.  His son, Arthur Rupert Midgley, joined him in 1929.  Business was still very difficult.  In 1939 the company moved to 1 Queen Square, Bristol, a rather down -at -heel property.  It is now a very sought after location!

The second world war broke out and in 1941 A.R. Midgley joined the R.A.F. Volunteer Reserve as a pilot officer.  At the end of the war he returned to the business.

He and his father continued to struggle to make ends meet selling leather entirely as agents and holding no stocks.

A.W. Midgley died in 1952 and the business moved to A.R. Midgley's house in Wrington, Somerset and became a limited company.

Andrew Midgley, the younger of twin sons, joined his father in October 1962 with the offer of £20 per month and a share in the profits - which were nil at the time.

Business was quiet but it did leave time for snooker matches after lunch in the winter and croquet in the summer.

Andrew's twin brother, Simon, joined the company in 1968 and was amazed to find the entire stock was housed in a small damp coal shed.

Whether or not it was due to Simon's extra input, the coal shed soon became too small as the company began to hold stocks of leather.  Other rooms were commandeered and finally a small warehouse was purchased in 1977 in the village of Wedmore, Somerset.

Ten years later the first of the next generation, James, son of Andrew, joined the company followed seven years later by his cousin, William, son of Simon.

The business continued to grow and flourish, and a purpose built warehouse was erected in Cheddar in 1999.

The company now services many different leather users including saddlers, shoe, belt, bag and clothing manufacturers from their large stocks of leather.