William Iliffe is credited with starting the hosiery trade in Hinckley in 1640 when he brought the first frame to the town.
Dating from around 1740, our stocking-frame was built to knit men's hose (stockings), and was used in the domestic and workshop phase of the hosiery industry in Hinckley.
For many years the frame was stored in the cellars of Atkins Bros., Hosiery Manufacturers (founded 1722) in Lower Bond Street, Hinckley, until in the 1930s it was put into good order and given to the Hinckley Technical College for the teaching of straight-bar knitting. After World War II the frame was returned to Atkins Bros. and was displayed in the board room, which was in the cottages that now house the Hinckley & District Museum.
The frame, believed to be the oldest surviving working machine of its type in the country, was restored in 2002 and now takes pride of place in the museum's framework knitter's cottage room setting.
Hinckley & District Museum
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G This is a splendid example of Hinckley's hosiery heritage
Sean Items such as this frame shows the way that industry has grown from a cottage industry to a full factory industry
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Page Last Updated: 13 May 2013