About Us

Cockerill Shoes was established in November 1953 by John Cockerill with a shop in Sheaf Street, Daventry, Northamptonshire, making footwear and offering a shoe repair service.
John had started working at his Step Grandfather’s small shoe making factory in Northampton in 1945 and by the age of 13 had made his first pair of shoes. In 1947 he joined Manfields, the home of Wearer Shoes, as a pattern cutter.
John progressed through the ranks to become a sample maker and had the honour of making King Georges’ buckskin brogues.He also made the kid leather climbing boots that were worn on the Hillary expedition-the first to conquer Everest.
 C.C Crick & Son, Cranleigh, Surrey

In 1964, Daventry Council decided to compulsory purchase the whole of the  central part of the Town for development. Many retailers, including John Cockerill, took the meagre compensation and closed their businesses, devastating trade. The development project was later abandoned. In 1966, after a long search for a new business, John found C.C Crick and Son in Cranleigh, Surrey  which was up for sale. This photo is the original Crick store from July 1915. The young man on the left is  Rennie Crick and he is the Grandfather of Angela Vaz who is the Manager of our Cranleigh store today!


The Cranleigh store in 1966


CC Crick & Son was an existing shoe repair and retail business and Rennie Crick the proprietor was retiring, having already sold his grocery shop next to the shoe shop. The deal was done and John, his wife Janet and their sons moved down from Northampton to the flat above the shop in Cranleigh.  A new shop front was added shortly after.


1980 Cockerill Shoes, Haslemere

In 1974, John’s son, 13 year old Grant starts work in Clarks, in Guildford High Street on Saturdays and the holidays, and in 1975 joins Russell and Bromley, and by 1978 has entered their Trainee Manager programme. In 1980, John was offered the chance to buy an existing shoe retail business, Lamdins, in Haslemere. This was perfect timing, and with Grant waiting in the wings, the deal was done.


1999 Grant moves the Haslemere store

In 1983 John retired and Grant took over the business. In November 1984 Grant relocated the Cranleigh store. In 1999 Grant moved the Haslemere store next door, into the former Southern Electric premises, retaining the original premises.



2010 Stand-alone Kid’s shop opens in Haslemere

In July 2010, the children’s department in Haslemere was moved from upstairs to it’s own stand-alone store next door (where the original women’s department was) with wall art, TV screens and a train running around the store.  The footwear offering was modernised and some new brands were introduced across the three departments. A new epos system was introduced to the business giving  greater control of the buying and the business in general.

 cockerill kids, haslemere

2011 major refurbishment of the Haslemere store

In 2011 the main shop in Haslemere undertook a major refurbishment and the footwear collection continued to be  updated to attract new customers.  Our new marketing strategy began in earnest in which we staged ‘events’ to advertise ourselves locally. With the opening of our new children’s store, we organised a fun day with the town mayor cutting a ribbon, we had the staff in fancy dress; we had goody bags, balloons and had a popcorn machine. When we staged a 10 % off promotion, we had a member of staff dressed as a Cockerill handing out leaflets. We plan window campaigns which are eye-catching and quirky, and we always make sure we have something to offer that keeps us the ‘talking point’ locally.

In 2012 Cockerill shoes made the final of the Drapers footwear awards ‘Family Footwear Retailer of the Year’ Also in 2012, Ella aged 13, and the third generation of Cockerills, started working at the Haslemere store on Saturdays.



Cockerill Shoes named ‘National Independent Footwear Retailer of the Year 2013’

Cockerill Shoes was named Independent Footwear Retailer of the Year at the Drapers Footwear and Accessories Awards ceremony held at the Grosvenor House Hotel in Park Lane on Wednesday 24th April.

Caroline Nodder, Editor-in-Chief of Drapers, said: "Winning a Drapers Footwear & Accessories Award is the highest accolade you can get as a business in this sector and our panel of expert judges had a tougher time than ever deciding between some of the best entries we have ever had. To have walked away with the trophy is a major achievement and our winners and their teams should be incredibly proud of the hard work and dedication that got them there
 drapers award

May 2013 New Standalone Men’s Store is opened in Haslemere

The men’s department is transferred to it’s own standalone premises. The shop was refurbished with a ‘Gentleman’s club’ feel with chrome and burr walnut shop fittings and leather sofas.

 mens standalone store

New Handbag Department is opened in the Women’s store in Haslemere

Having moved the men’s department, the new space was converted to a handbag department within the main women’s store, adding a new category to our offer, with some new exciting premium leather and fashion handbag brands added