The Barbour story began in 1894 in the Market Place in South Shields. Although it sources products from around the globe, Barbour's classic wax jackets are still manufactured by hand in the factory in Simonside and each year over 100,000 jackets are processed via the central, subsidiary and local customer service operations.
It began with a flash of inspiration. It was 1825 in the Somerset village of Street and James Clark was busy working at the tannery owned by his brother, Cyrus. Among the sheepskin rugs, the off-cuts and cast-offs were piling up when James had a brainwave: “Slippers!”. And the rest, as they say, is history. A few stitches and a few years later, the sheepskin slipper was born. It was the very first Clarks shoe and the opening chapter in a remarkable story that continues to unfold to this day.