Bradshaw and Lloyd Fine Shoe Blog

  • Fitting Loake shoes

    Having been a Loake specialist since 1990 we at Bradshaw & Lloyd have plenty of experience in fitting Loake shoes.  At present there are some thirty seven different lasts on which their shoes and boots are made and these not only determine the overall shape and therefore look of the shoe but to some extent also the fit.  This was never much of an issue when one would traditionally visit a shoe shop and try on different shoes until finding the right pair that fitted.  However with internet shopping now superseding the high street it is now rather important to order the right size first time.  We all know what a bore it is to have to return items and await the replacement.loake 1880 logo high res- 2012 cmyk

    Loake are well known for the quality, pricing and styling of their footwear but what is less well known is how their shoes fit.  Fortunately, and unlike some other famous shoe brands, when it comes to fitting Loake shoes they are pretty consistent in their sizing.  As a general rule of thumb if you have been happy with a certain size and fitting in a pair of Loake shoes or boots you can be pretty confident that the same size and fitting in another style will suit just as well.

    However for added confidence in fitting Loake shoes at Bradshaw & Lloyd we offer an exclusive online shoe fitting service whereby you can submit outline drawings of your feet and we shall advise the best size and fit in a particular model.  For further details please refer to the sizing link at the bottom of our home page at

  • Goodyear welted

    The term Goodyear welted is a little confusing as it has absolutely nothing to do with rubber and in particular Goodyear rubber tyres.  Prior to Charles Goodyear in 1869 patenting a mechanical means of stitching the welt to a shoe’s upper and then to its sole the entire process had to be painstakingly undertaken by highly skilled craftsmen.  These craftsmen invariably operated out of their own homes in what was essentially a cottage industry.  There have always been other simpler and therefore cheaper methods of shoe construction but nothing can compete with a truly welted method of construction.  Therefore the mechanization of Goodyear welted shoe and boot construction meant that a factory based shoe industry could begin and make the most of all the modern power technologies which had enabled the industrial revolution to take off in England throughout the nineteenth century.


    The mechanization of Goodyear welted shoe construction in the last quarter of the nineteenth century explains why all the great shoe makers which continue to thrive to this day were established then:  Churches, Loake, Sanders and Sanders, Barker, Crockett and Jones. Those skilled artisan shoe makers would move from making shoes in their homes to mass manufacturing under one factory roof.

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    There are other cheaper methods of shoe construction.  At its simplest the upper can be glued to the sole.  The Blakey method involves stitching the sole directly to the upper.  With a welted shoe the welt, usually a thin strip of leather, is stitched around the outside of the shoe’s upper providing a void which is filled with cork.  The benefits of a Goodyear welted shoe is better insulation, enhanced comfort, improved waterproofing and crucially the ability to re-sole the shoe numerous time without degrading the upper.

  • English shoe sizing

    It will come as no surprise to anyone that there has been a seismic increase in the online men’s shoe industry over recent years.  And the world renowned shoe industry in the UK has been at the forefront of this development which has meant that the question over English shoe sizing is more pertinent than ever.  There have always been various shoe scales for men’s shoes throughout the world, the major ones being:  UK, European, Japan, Australia, US and Canada.  Whilst within these each manufacturer will be using numerous different lasts, each of which may provide a slightly different fit.

    The fact that there are five different major shoe scales internationally isn’t too much of an issue since there are readily available conversion charts such as:

    Therefore one can easily translate ones local shoe size to English shoe sizing when purchasing a pair of English shoes. However the fly in the ointment is that some UK shoe makers use lasts which are not sized regularly.  There are two cases in point with regards to the brands we offer at Bradshaw and Lloyd.  Both RE Tricker and Barker use some lasts which come up considerably larger than standard sizes.  It would be too complicated here to go into their different lasts and which ones are not standard.  Fortunately we are well experienced in all Trickers and Barker lasts so when ordering from simply order your regular UK size and we shall then contact you if you have selected a shoe made on an unusual fitting last and advise accordingly.

    Fortunately all Loake, Sanders, Sebago and our own Bradshaw and Lloyd brand of footwear have very regular English shoe sizing.  However if you have any questions do contact sales@bradshawandlloyd or telephone us to discuss your shoe requirements and we will be happy to offer advice.  We have over 25 years’ experience of the brands we offer.

  • Repairing Loake shoes

    The Loake factory in Kettering offer a comprehensive repair service for all their shoes and boots, whether made in their Wood Street factory or overseas.  They provide a free courier service so you only pay the actual cost of the repair.  For a complete long sole and re-heel, new seat socks, laces and shoe box repairing Loake shoes at their factory costs just £80. However you will lose the shoes for around 4 weeks because they do have to pass through the factory’s production line.  But when they do come back to you they will look like brand new shoes.

    Goodyear welted

    The alternative to repairing Loake shoes at the Loake factory is of course your local cobbler.  If you go this route be sure to use a traditional cobbler and not a heel bar where their speciality might be cutting keys!  Also don’t be tempted to have a complete long sole and heel replacement.  Only Loake have the lasts on which their shoes and boots are made and if your local cobbler uses his generic last shapes and takes the shoe completely apart they may lose their original fit.  Simply ask for a half sole and re-heel which is far less invasive.

    Another alternative for repairing Loake shoes if you happen to work in central London might be to try the Bradshaw and Lloyd shoe repair service.  As with Loake we provide a free daily courier collection and return service throughout central London. We pride ourselves with an exceptionally good repair service and only use the best materials.  Additionally you will lose your shoes for under a week.  We charge just £58 for a half sole and re-heel whether in rubber or leather.  Email repairs at for further details.

  • Summer driving shoes

    For a great summer shoe there is much to be said for the moccasin driving shoes: lightweight, stylish and designed to be worn sockless.  And in time for the summer Loake have brought out an exciting collection of driving shoes in a variety of designs and suede options which we are pleased to offer online at and in our Hurstpierpoint store.

    The Loake Donington and Herbert are a plain front moccasin driving shoes whilst the Loake Thruxton is essentially the same shoe but with a fully functioning lace threaded through eyelets all around the shoe.

    Loake Donington navy suede newLoake Herbert ginger suede new 2Loake Thruxton sand suede

    What we particularly like about these driving shoes is that with their full leather comfort linings they can easily double for a slipper around the house.  So much more stylish than a traditional slipper.  Priced at just £110, which includes free postage and a Freepost returns service throughout the UK, they must be seen.

  • Annonay

    Fine leather has been tanned in the French town of Annonay since the 12th century.  The know how has been passed down through the generations of residents and to this day Tannery D’Annonay produces the finest shoe leather in the whole of Europe.  Here calf skins from the finest origins throughout France are tanned and finished.  We have selected Tannery D’Annonay to supply the very finest full grain calf leathers for our Bradshaw and Lloyd Alnwick and Bamburgh boots.Bradshaw & Lloyd Alnwick-1536TD SandS above Bradshaw & Lloyd Alnwick-1536TD SandS diff angle Bradshaw & Lloyd Alnwick-1536TD SandS side Bradshaw & Lloyd Alnwick-1536TD SandS sole Bradshaw & Lloyd Alnwick-1536TD SandS

    The hides are shipped to the Sanders factory in Rushden in Northamptonshire where the finest craftsmen use these hides along with the best calf leather linings, leather insoles, welts and heels and the traditional goodyear welted method of construction to make our boots on our Hurst last.  If you haven’t yet tried a pair of Bradshaw and Lloyd boots made with Annonay calf then you must.  They are a joy to wear, look divine and are built to last.  You can obtain them at or from the Hurstpierpoint high street store outside Brighton on the Sussex south coast.

  • Loake womens

    Loakes have been making quality men’s shoes in Northamptonshire since 1880 and continue to do so under the present leadership of Andrew Loake.  However it is a lesser known fact that a very fine, if limited, range of Loake womens boots complements their very extensive men’s range.

    These Loake womens boots are made with the very same goodyear welted construction and the same attention to details and leathers as the men’s boots but on a fashionably elegant last.  The Chatterley Chelsea boot is made on the Rider last and is available in brown waxy leather, black calf and brown suede:

    The best selling Loake Chatterley Chelsea boot The best selling Loake Chatterley Chelsea boot

    The Anne 6 eyelet brogue ankle boot is made on last 97 in a sublime tan burnished calf:Loake Anne tan

    In the pipeline is the Loake Godiva strap ankle boot which will be available in both black calf and brown waxy leather for autumn 2018.

    These three Loake womens boots are made in half sizes from UK size 3 to 8 in a regular F width fitting so suit most women’s feet.  However as with all goodyear welted/stitched boots they do take just a little wearing in.  However it is well worthwhile as they will prove to be superbly comfortable and offer great support and comfort.  And as with all goodyear welted footwear Loake womens boots are fully repairable and are built to last.

    We stock all Loake womens boots in the Bradshaw and Lloyd shop in Hurstpierpoint or you can order them online at for immediate despatch.

  • Loake 1880


    The Loake 1880 collection is Loake’s premium range of shoes and boots.  These are all made in their Wood Street factory in Kettering, Northamptonshire and compete with very much more expensive brands in terms of materials, craftsmanship.  At we are proud to offer the entire range of Loake 1880 footwear whilst our Hurstpierpoint high street store stocks more shoes from this collection than any other high street store outside central London.  As you would expect we stock the styles in half size increments.loake 1880 logo high res- 2012 cmyk

    Most Loake 1880 shoes are made on the Capital last which in our opinion provides the perfect shape for a city shoe. It provides a fashionably shaped toe without being too long or pointy.  Essentially for online orders the Loake 1880 collection provide a regular fit so you can be confident that they will suit should you order your usual UK size.  Loake totally understand the importance of this when ordering online.  All these shoes and boots are fully leather lined with leather insoles. On some styles there is an option of either a traditional leather sole or a harder wearing Dainite rubber sole.  Both have their attributes but essentially both are attached to a leather welt using the traditional goodyear welted method.

    Inevitably we have our favourite styles from the Loake 1880 collection and here we happen to coincide with what Loake reckon is one of their very best selling styles: the Aldwych toecap Oxford.  The Aldwych is available in black calf, tan burnished calf and dark brown burnished calf.  If you are able to do pop by our Hurstpierpoint store just outside Brighton where you will be sure to find something irresistible.Loake Aldwych mahogany new copy


  • Quality mens shoe shop in Sussex

    Finding a traditional mens shoe shop is no easy task these days with so many having closed over the last few decades.  There is of course plenty of choice in London’s Jermyn Street but these shops tend to offer just styles from the more expensive end of the manufacturer’s full range.  In this one street you can certainly view shoes from Churches, Crockett and Jones, Barker, Cheaney, Trickers, Loake, New and Lingwood and Lobb.  However shoes in the shop windows do not tend to be price marked.  The thinking is of course that if you need to ask the price then you probably won’t be able to afford them.Claire Goldsmith150416-0123-v4 reduced

    However a solution is at hand if you happen to live or work in the south east.  Bang in the centre of Sussex, just off the M23 outside Brighton is the stunningly beautiful village of Hurstpierpoint, which can trace its origins back a thousand years or more.  In the middle of this village is our traditional mens shoe shop specializing in footwear from the very well know quality brands of Loake, Barker, Sanders, Trickers and Sebago.  We also offer our own exclusive range of Chelsea boots and chukka boots which we proudly believe are the finest on the market, and are made entirely in England.

    We stock styles in half sizes and a very comprehensive range of styles to suit most pockets. So don’t feel that you have to spend an exhaustive journey to London or worse still feel that you have to downgrade your shoe wardrobe by choosing from the big high street chains.  Instead drop by our Hurstpierpoint store – the finest mens shoe shop in Sussex,

  • Loake sale

    At we stock a comprehensive range of Loake sale shoes and boots.  These are not seconds but are all in pristine condition only having recently been discontinued by Loakes.  As with all our non sale shoes we provide a next day delivery service for free throughout the UK and charge just £10 for delivery throughout Europe.  And should you need to return a pair as not required we provide a Freepost return service from your local Post Office within the UK.Loake sale logo new

    Because Loake are continually bringing out exciting new styles of shoes and boots each season you will find that the range of Loake sale footwear which we have on offer is both extensive and remarkably good value.  Of course we cannot guarantee that we will have your size in stock in the style which you like but just keep an eye on our list of Loake sale shoes as it is always changing and something irresistible might just come along soon.

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