About the Museum

The Museum of Leathercraft

In 1946 John W. Waterer with the collaboration of Dr. Claude Spiers, founded the Museum of Leathercraft. It now flourishes through a partnership with Northampton Borough Council.

The museum was started with the aim of “the preservation and encouragement of high standards of craftsmanship and design” in the leather industry and to collect and showcase these items. Waterer, with Spiers, collected several hundred pieces, attracting grants from trusts and benefactors. He pioneered the conservation of leather, and was the inspiration behind the formation of the Leather Conservation Centre, also based here in Northampton, on the University campus.

The Museum has had several locations, and in 1978 was relocated to Northampton, seen as the natural home for the collection due to its links with the leather and shoe trades.

The collection consists of over 5000 items that span several centuries, cultures and crafts reflecting the development of leathercraft across the world.

Explore the rest of galleries and discover this wonderful collection.

We are housed in the Abington Museum and have acquired more space in which to display many more exciting pieces.

The display is themed into Sport, Beauty, Colour, Historic and  Important.



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