Jones Textilaties Ltd


Incorporated as a Limited Company on the 28th July 1904 as Jones Brothers (Blackburn) Ltd the company had previously been involved in the designing and manufacturing of elastic harnesses for the Longworth & Jones dhooty motion. This motion had been invented by the brother of Joseph Jones and George Smith Jones who made the harnesses. Their brother Francis L Jones was a manager of the Solomon Longworth & Sons at the Walpole Street Mill in Blackburn. The motion was the predecessor of the dobby, used later for weaving dhooty cloth for export to India.

The company grew and after Joseph Jones died in 1882 his share in the business was bought by Francis L Jones and the company became known as Jones Brothers. The works situated on Hart Street became known as Pioneer Works and from here the company manufactured a number of items for the textile industry, Dobby Lags and pegs, Comber Boards, and Jacquard Slips as well as Dobby Heads and Jacquard Harnesses.

In 1890 George Smith sold his interest in the company to Francis who then became the sole proprietor. The company continued to grow and expanded to a second site at the Standard Works on William Hopwood Street. Here the factory made Healds and Reeds for doubling Heald yarn. In 1903 a son of Francis went to India to establish a direct business link with mills in India.

In 1904 other members of the Jones family joined the company and continued to grow, a subsidiary company Jones Textilaties Export Company Limited was formed in 1912. In 1918 further purchase of premises were added to with the purchase of the Ainsworth brass foundry, later to be known as the Dial works. In 1919 the name of the firm was changed to Jones Textilaties Ltd.

Further extensions were made to the various works which allowed the company to also start to make Weft Forks, Weft Fork Holders and Weft Grates, Temples, Perforated Grip and other metal articles. In 1936 a further mill, Audley Range Mill was purchased however, war prevented any further expansion of the company. However, the company did purchase Alexandra Mill and Canton works but they could not be altered until 1949 and 1950 respectively, when Canton works began producing Bobbins and Pirns and Alexandra Mill began producing Cotton Healds, Dobby Healds, Jacquard Harnesses, Heald Frames, Wire Healds, Shedrods, and Pitchbound and All-Metal Reeds.

In 1952 the company was still in the control of various members of the Jones family and later in 1958 three leading English Wire Heald makers, F W Carr & Son Ltd, Greenwood & Co (Shipley) Ltd and Jones Textilaties Ltd combined and a new company was formed Wire Healds Limited.