Welcome to the Stevengraph-Silks.com web site





Lester & Harris

Other Silk Manufacturers

    Lester & Harris, Coventry
oli4 Picture: Victoria 1837 - 1897 (Dates either side of crown) (excellent quality image)
oli8 Picture: Victoria 1837 - 1897 (Dates below crown) (excellent quality image)
oli12 Picture: Victoria England's Queen 1837 - 1897 (Dates below crown) (excellent quality image)
oli40 Bookmark: In Memoriam / Queen Victoria - believed to be Lester & Harris (excellent quality image)
oli44 Favour: Lockhurst Lane Wesleyan Sunday School (excellent quality image)


Various small textile firms traced their origins to the early 19th century. Dalton & Barton, of Mason Road for instance, back to 1820 and Grant's Livingstone Works, Lockhurst Lane was built in 1882. Carpenter's Weaving Co. in Edgwick Road in 1900, and Laird's St. Lawrence's works in Carlton Road in 1907.

LESTER and HARRIS was recorded in Foleshill since 1880, and at their Great Heath Works, Foleshill Road, Coventry about 1890.
Their primary address though was Park Street, Foleshill, Coventry; being a small street off Foleshill Road.
On 24 June 1949, it was recorded that James Harris of Coventry, was the Managing Director and had been since June 1920.

In 1938 Lester & Harris acquired The Elastic Web works, Attleborough Green, Nuneaton, from Rufus Jones. On 31 October 1940, they purchase property on Webster Street, Coventry, (although this was destroyed by bombing on 9 April 1941), and on 22 June 1950 they also set up a new business in Queensland, Australia, registered as Lester & Harris Pty.

Lester & Harris' and Grant's were destroyed in the Blitz on 14 November 1940, although both seem to have restarted manufacturing as in the 1960's Cash's absorbed various Coventry weaving companies, including B. Laird, Lester Harris and W.H. Grant.

A landmark law case in equity took place in 1967 (Boardman v Phipps) involving a trust fund set up on the death of Charles William Phipps in 1944. He held a minority shareholding interest in Lester & Harris. The case involved share dealings, but refers at one point to "Boardman and Tom Phipps (in 1959-60) sold off the Australian and Coventry operations of Lester and Harris and reorganised the Nuneaton factory.

Foleshill Ribbons, by courtesy of the late Gordon Cowley who researched the information - extract from: http://www.denspages.co.uk/roots/weaving.htm
In Coventry businesses 1896. Compiled by Anne Williscroft from the book "Coventry Up To Date - Views and Reviews" - http://forum.historiccoventry.co.uk/articles/cov_business_1896.php


Back to Top of this page
Back to Other Silk Weavers page
Back to main Home page

This site was created on 18 December 2005
This site was last updated on 12 February 2016 © Peter Daws - Stevengraph-Silks