The UK lost another of its heritage businesses in 2023, when the world-famous Yeovil leather supplier, Pittards, closed its doors for the final time. This photo was taken while I was sourcing gloving leathers from the Pittards tannery in 2019 – a familiar sight to British leatherworkers, but one that’s sadly to be seen no more.

Pittards had a rich history of making gloves, gloving leathers and other leather items. The firm was established in Yeovil in 1826, and operated tanneries in both Yeovil and Ethiopia, during its heyday. Some of the leather components made by Pittards were highly technical, and they were often named in the descriptions of products which included them, much like a GORE-TEX lining or a Rolls-Royce engine. Pittards named the recent pound crash, rising interest rates and inflation as factors that contributed to its downfall. The closure of this grand, old company is a reminder that we should cherish our manufacturers and support them while we can.

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