Founded 1880

Barker shoes create high-quality, handcrafted leather shoes and accessories for men and women.

Barker History

Arthur Barker, fondly known as Great Grandfather Barker, was a determined and persistent man. He began his shoemaking journey in a small workshop at the bottom of a garden in North Road, Earls Barton. In 1880, he founded the company and personally hand-sewed shoes, with a majority of the work being sent to home workers.

In 1905, Arthur and his sons relocated to a small factory in Station Road. Charles became a leather importer, while Ernest and Arthur Jr. worked on fulfilling army boot contracts for World War I. The business grew and established an export trade that reached 75% of Barkers’ output, mainly to South Africa. However, Arthur, the founder of Barker Shoes, passed away in 1921.

In 1933, several workers from Earls Barton, known as “The Pioneers,” emigrated to South Africa to establish a new branch. Arthur Jr. and his son Roy ran the business until 1965. After World War II, Barker Shoes expanded and built a new factory for making ladies’ shoes, allowing the older factory to focus on men’s footwear. The third generation, brothers Albert and Charles, joined the business in 1948, with Albert becoming a world-renowned shoe designer.

William, Albert’s son, joined the business in 1956, becoming a respected shoe maker and designer in his own right. The business continued to thrive, and in 1986, a modern factory was built in Earls Barton. Today, Barker Shoes is owned by an international group that is committed to preserving the brand’s integrity.

Barker Shoes is highly sought after by discerning customers, with classic and casual styles in demand at prestigious stores worldwide. The brand has become a part of the select band of quality British products, with a reputation for maintaining the highest standards of shoemaking for 135 years.

Read more on Barker history.

Style and Occasion


Where do Barker manufacture?

Barker manufacture their products in Earls Barton, Northampton.



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Last modified: 2023-10-19 06:41

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