From the Clicking Room to the Shoe Room, our staff are proud to work for NPS Shoes. Meet some of our team and find out what their favourite styles are.
MICHAEL - CLICKING ROOM SUPERVISOR
A well respected and admired veteran of the shoe industry, Michael originally trained as a carpenter during school holidays before his shoemaking career began. At the age of 16, Michael's two Aunties arranged for their manager at the time to visit his home and persuade him that a job at the Northamptonshire Productive Society was a fantastic career choice.
In July 1974, Michael started working at NPS Shoes alongside attending Rushden Shoe College twice a week. In 1979, he joined the committee and became the president in 1983. Today, Michael is the longest serving employee at NPS Shoes and whilst times have changed, he stills loves the factory atmosphere and the people, who he describes it as one big family.
A gentleman that has spent a lifetime on his feet and is undisputedly an expert on footwear has chosen the Brown Greasy 6 Eye Astronaut Boot as his staff pick.
MARK - BACK PART MOULDER
In 1984 Mark left school and started a young persons training course in carpentry. After a conversation with a friend, he quit the course and joined NPS Shoes. With brief stints in side lasting and inseam trimming he found his confidence in back part moulding. He enjoys everything about working in the factory and describes himself as "part of the furniture".
Our very own marathon man, Mark can often be seen competing in local races and participating in runs with his local running club. When he takes off his running shoes, he replaces them with his Black Hi-Shine Monkey Boots and can be found enjoying a nice cold beverage in the village pub.
HANNAH & JANE - CLOSING ROOM MACHINISTS
From a young age Jane has had a passion for creativity and design. She received her first sewing machine for Christmas at the tender age of six. In 1987 she left school and joined her brother at a local shoe company and in conjunction studied part time at Wellingborough College where she learnt all aspects of the shoe trade from design to the the Shoe Room. Fourteen years later she took a career break to raise her daughter Hannah, re-joining the industry in 2005 with another local company. Here she experienced her first career high - meeting HRH King Charles or the Prince of Wales as he was then known.
Jane joined NPS Shoes in 2020 and within a year, experienced her second career high of introducing her daughter Hannah to her passion for making footwear. Hannah having previously worked in retail wanted a change and has now become one of the next generation of shoe makers. She loves the friendly environment and the opportunity to work with her mum, absorbing Janes experience and talent.
Jane's staff pick is the Black Greasy Biker Boot which she describes as chunky, stylish and perfect for festivals.
Hannah's choice is the Black greasy Dealer Boot and is fond of the leather and classic look.
GRAHAM - BOOT & SHOE OPERATIVE
After leaving school in 1980, Graham applied for a variety of jobs before he came across an advert for a local shoe maker close to his family home. Here he established his career with the most prominent role being a Back Part Moulder. Forty years later he was sadly made redundant due to the impact of the pandemic. Not allowing this to dampen his spirits, he reached out to a long time friend and colleague who put him in touch with NPS Shoes.
Graham joined us in 2021 and his warm smile ensured a positive welcome from the team. He states that he has "never had a bad day" since starting and enjoys the happy atmosphere.
Although it was a tough decision for Graham, his staff pick is the Black Hi-Shine Gibson Shoe.
BOB - PRODUCTION MANAGER
Bob is a recent addition to the team but brings with him a wealth of skill and knowledge. Growing up in Hertfordshire, his original career choice saw him working in finance. Unfortunately the pressure of the environment at such a young age found him re-evaluating his goals and moving into a resin factory. This is where his aptitude for work saw him thrive in senior and managerial roles. In 1988 he moved to Northamptonshire where he continued his success and took the opportunity to set up his own business. After thirty years in the glass industry, Bob decided that he wanted one last challenge before retirement and in 2022 joined NPS Shoes. He is thoroughly enjoying learning new skills and working with the friendly team.
Bob's staff pick is the Gaucho Crazy Horse 8 Eye Derby Boot.
LISA - SHOE ROOM OPERATIVE
Having worked in the Northamptonshire footwear industry for the last 28 years, Lisa joined NPS Shoes 3 years ago. Her current role involves socking, dressing, polishing and antiquing. She particularly enjoys working along side a wonderful team and in a friendly environment.
Lisa's favourite product is the Mary Jane Shoe which she describes as a feminine style, versatile and suitable for smaller feet.
PAUL - WELT SEWER
Paul started his career in the footwear industry back in 1986, where he joined a local company as a warehouse operative. After two years he held aspirations to join the production line and began training as a Welt Sewer. In 2002 he joined NPS Shoes as part of the Cooperative and 21 years later still enjoys being part of the British Manufacturing Industry along with working for a family run business.
Paul's staff pick is the Black Greasy 8 Eye Derby Boot which he describes as a comfortable, classic look that he enjoys wearing whilst on his feet all day.
STEVE - MACHINE OPERATOR
A face you may recognise from our social media clips of the factory, Steve is the man behind the heat sealing and edge trimming machines. After leaving school in the early 80's he original trained as a butcher. Looking for a new challenged he joined the Northamptonshire shoe industry in 1987 and in 2002 NPS Shoes.
During breaks from work he enjoys attending local Rock and Roll weekends where he wears his Black Hi-shine Tassel Loafers with pride.
KAREN - POST MACHINIST
The most steady hands in the factory, Karen started an apprenticeship in 1985. She attended Wellingborough College where she studied all aspects of the Shoe Room. After taking a career break to raise her family, she joined NPS Shoes in 2017 where she soon fell straight back in to the swing of things.
Karen's favourite colour is Burgundy Rub-Off so she has chosen the 6 Eye Astronaut Boot as her staff pick.
IAN - LASTING ROOM SUPERVISOR
A true local legend, Ian was born in Wollaston in the late 70's and started working for NPS Shoes shortly after leaving school. After a short career change to become a Publican, he returned in 2020 to resume his career in the factory. He enjoys the short commute to work and the friendly atmosphere on the factory floor.
Ian's staff pick is the Gaucho Crazy Horse Monkey Boot, he loves the style and finds them comfortable and easy to "break in".