Harry Rutherford's
Festival of Britain Mural

Friday, 6 August 2010

The James North Company

James North started life as a family business. It began as a chamois leather firm in Colne in 1868 but moved to Hyde in 1876. The first place they operated from in Hyde was a disused stable in Robert Street but soon expansion into the glove making industry meant they needed bigger premises and they moved to Godley Mills.


James Norths' Bottom Street works during the Hyde Flood.

Heavy flooding caused extensive damage in 1900 and 1906 - in the latter year a large part of Godley Mills was destroyed. But the firm fought back from these, several fires and the 1930s depression, to become a highly successful multi-national safety apparatus and clothing manufacturer, patenting the PVC glove in 1947.

James Norths at the Market Street Premises just before demolition.

James Norths were commissioned to make gauntlet gloves for Sir Ernest Shackleton's great Antarctic expedition.
(With thanks to the M.E.N.)

There is too much to write about James North in one post so this is just a short history. Look out for more photos in the future.


Tom said...

Excellent pictures here Nancy, and I'd forgot about the snippet of info concerning Shackleton... looking forward to seeing more..

ian... said...

Love the picture of the flood Nancy. Seeing Bottom St now, it's hard to fathom something like that happening.

Had no idea James Norths used to be there either. My Great Aunt used to work for them when they were up Market St.

Hydonian said...

My Nan worked for Slack Mills before it was James North....a noisy place indeed!

Anonymous said...

ah the weeping willow tree, the memories come flooding back, i remember myself, sean and alan mayall, russell and duncan hudson, alan pickford and the gilmores climbing through the fence to climb this magnificant tree.. long hot summer days from a bygone era

niki said...

my son is doing a project on how Hyde used to be and how it today in comparison have you any advice on where we could obtain both information and photographs for example the mill James North Mill the school that was where Asda now is pics of the market place etc any help welcome thanks niki

Tom said...

Hi Niki
We have pictures on here of all that you mention... tell your son to feel free to use any pictures or information from our blog.. if you'd like to contact us our email is hydonian@gmail.com