Handmade Yorkshire – Tony Slinger Footwear

Published on May 12, 2013

Today we present the first film of series based on hand made items within the Yorkshire region in the United Kingdom. The Series will explore the personal lives of the people and families that bring these items to life either for a hobby or profession.

Tony Slinger, a bespoke shoe maker spares his time to speak about his career history and the traditional methods used for producing some of Yorkshires finest leather shoes.

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Tony is the last remaining bespoke shoe maker in all of Yorkshire, working with clients from all over the United Kingdom, sourcing his leather goods from J & FJ Baker and Co Ltd

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Tony Slinger

text and video edit by: Christopher White

More about Tony Slinger.

Do you want bespoke footwear that keeps the old traditions alive using the finest leather and a bygone process which dates back to Napoleonic times? At Tony Slinger Footwear you get a personal service that provides you with the ultimate in bespoke footwear. Tony Slinger started in the shoemaking industry at the age of 14 learning the trade from generations of Shoemakers using ancient traditions.

Working for HW Poole and Sons established in 1888, he had the opportunity to exploit 100 years of knowledge and experience. He excelled during his apprenticeship and showed real skill during a further two years on the bench by learning each exacting detail of the processes required, developing a keen eye for the highest quality and a drive for perfection.

In 1987, Tony was instrumental in the acquisition of the contract to supply the Queens Household Cavalry. He volunteered to hand make some guardsman boot samples following the original Napoleonic blueprint. These were then inspected to the exacting standards of the MOD on behalf of the Palace.

Each boot was cut in half and exhaustively inspected to ensure only the highest standards were attained. This included the counting of every individual hand stitch. Once satisfied, the contract was awarded. Each pair of boots were inspected and awarded the military stamp of approval. Tony commenced the production of over 50 pairs for the first order and it is to his credit that after only six pairs, Tony was assigned his own quality stamp and self inspected all the subsequent pairs he produced.

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Showing a great aptitude, Tony challenged himself further moving into the orthopaedic shoes in Yorkshire area of the business. His ambition drove him to master the most complex processes including cast work, the production of cradle corks, false feet and O’Connor extensions. In 1994 Tony was head hunted by another Orthopaedic specialist who sought his key skills and experience and he continued to work there until he started his own business in 2009.

Tony Slinger Footwear Ltd was established to build on the expertise and exacting standards of an experienced craftsman. We offer a personal service for both bespoke footwear and orthopaedic footwear requirements. We offer a free consultation which can, in orthopaedic cases, quite seriously change your life. Our bespoke service offers you the opportunity to have unique footwear designed for you as an individual. Please look at our Bespoke & Orthopaedic pages for a detailed walk through our process.

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From being the bespoke yorkshire shoemaker Wetherby provider, Tony now produces footwear for leading bespoke footwear specialists in Ireland and Bespoke and Orthopaedic specialists throughout the UK.

Tony Slinger


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