T. F. Firth & Company

The company was a combination of several businesses: Edwin Firth of Heckmondwike, and Firth Willans's carpet manufacturer of Bailiff Bridge.

In 1867, they bought a mill in Bailiff Bridge at auction.

The company took the name T. F. Firth & Company in October 1875 when Willans left the partnership.

Around 1875, they built Clifton Mill next to the mill on the site of the Bailiff Bridge Toll Booth.

Thomas Freeman Firth was succeeded by his son Sir Algernon Firth in 1909.

On 18th May 1881, they discharged 30 workers who had come out on strike after the firm announced proposed wage reductions.

In 1909, cottages at Square Fold were demolished to make way for new mills as the facilities expanded at Bailiff Bridge.

The company always had a close relationship with its employees and with the people of Bailiff Bridge.

In 1888, Sir Algernon Firth opened a factory in the United States as part of a worldwide expansion plan. The company established factories at Firthcliffe and other towns in the USA – where they became one of America's largest carpet producers.

Sir William Akroyd took over the organisation when Algernon Firth retired in the 1920s.

The company is well known for its Axminsters, Wiltons and tufted carpets made with wool and man-made fibres. They also produced artificial grass for sports pitches.

The company had many high-profile commissions including carpets for

In 1968, the company became a part of the Readicut Group.

In December 1997, the company became a part of the Interface Group, US carpet tile manufacturers with works at Shelf.

In 2000, the weaving section closed. In December 2000, the Clifton Mill was sold, and in October 2001, the remaining Victoria Mill – with its newly installed Axminster and Wilton weaving equipment – was put up for sale, the company's leisure, travel and tourism sales having been badly affected by the terrorist attack in New York on 11th September 2001.

[2002] Work began on demolishing the mills to make way for more houses.

[2006] All the mills have been demolished except for the 1909 office building

See Birkby Moor, Brighouse War Memorial, Firth's War Memorial, Firth's Carpets mill dam, May Hartley, Lightcliffe House, William Lochhead, Charles Henry Payne and Joseph Waddington

© Malcolm Bull 2021
Revised 15:04 / 12th May 2021 / 5821

Page Ref: MMF766

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