Copley Marshall and Co was set up at Wildspur Mill in the small hamlet of New Mill in the Pennine Hills of Yorkshire in 1899 by industrial chemist, James Copley and businessman Percy Marshall after they had patented revolutionary new machinery that could mercerise and dye cotton yarns.
In 1905 Copley Marshall embraced some early marketing techniques by commissioning the artist Louis Wain to paint ‘The Wildspur Kittens’, reproduced on postcards to promote the ‘Wildspur’ label
By 1912 Copley Marshall, selling under the ʻWildspurʼ label, had become the UKʼs largest manufacturer of ʻstripingʼ effect yarns, with ranges of fine count decoration yarns, mercerised Cottons for worsted suitings, embroidery yarns and twisted two colour effect yarns.
During the 2nd World war Copleyʼs production was adapted to supply yarns for fabrics used to clad war planes, in the production of gas masks and even in laces for army boots.
Offering employment to generations of local people, Copley are remarkable in establishing a tradition of long, local family service. This resulted in Copley Marshall having only 3 chairmen, 5 managing directors, and 5 company secretaries in itʼs first 100 years of trading.
In 1999 Copley Marshall celebrated their centennial and acquired William White and Sons (Huddersfield) which strengthened their export sales in striping yarns
In 2007 Rex H Perkins, a long time yarn supplier to Copley, bought out Copley Marshall after the retirement of the 3 principal directors thus keeping one of UKʼs oldest textile companies, still based in the heart of Yorkshire, still a family run business and still the leading UK supplier of ʻstripingʼ yarns, Mercerised Cottons and ʻlistingʼ (name edge) yarns .
Copley Marshall commissioned local Huddersfield design agency “Sync’d Design Ltd” to develop their first website.
Copley Marshall amalgamated with Rex H Perkins Ltd to manufacture and run yarns from the Nottingham site