The Clarks shoe company is a huge worldwide company and most of you will have heard the name. The small town of Street, Somerset is where they got their start back in 1825 and their world headquarters is still located in this town of 11,000 people. Even though manufacturing is no longer done here (at one point they employed 1,400 people in the town) the company still has a big presence with it's headquarters and distribution centre.
The most expensive pair of shoes Clarks ever made. There were only 37 pairs made of alligator skin and 25 pairs ended up in the Japanese market. No idea what year it was, but they sold for £1,500.
Ruth, pointing up at the world's largest all leather boot. Made for the jolly green giant?
These shoes were from the 17th century.
Did women have skinny feet in the 1800's?
Clarks mens shoes in the early 1900's.
Ruth and Helen looking at the displays.
The Clarks were teetotallers back in the 1800's and the town of Street had a drinking problem. They started their own AA club for employees!
Did anybody else have a pair of these comfy Clarks Wallabees? I know I had a pair! This shoe popularized the Clarks brand in the US and Canada back in the early 1970's. They sold for $22.99 when they started North American distribution in 1967.
And of course every guy had a pair of these late 1970's boots!
There is no longer a factory, but there is a factory outlet!
A few interesting facts...the Clarks Show Company is a privately held company, still 81% owned by the Clark family. It is Britain's 33rd largest company. It did sales of £1.1B with profits of £125M in the year 2010. Not a single shoe is currently made in the UK.