W & J R Thompson Woodturners Ltd c2003

With thanks to Bill Longbottom for providing the scans.



Now a housing development, the site on Holme Lane was for many years the home of
a world-renowned woodturners business known locally as the "peg and lag shop".

Added May 2010

The following article was provided by the late local historian Miss Doris Riley in November 2005 to include in the December 2005 village newsletter:

Established in 1862 by Mr William Thompson, a village joiner & undertaker, at Rose Mount - I believe a windmill provided power. In later years his nephew Walter, then his brother John Robert joined him. Walter lived in an end terrace house at Ash Grove, John Robert at the "Butterfly House". Their families followed into the business. The brothers expanded the business - a Sutton man invented the Dobby for the weaving trade, and William made the first lag - hence the name "Peg & Lag Shop".

They moved to the "Vineries" at Bull Common in Holme Lane, still in Sutton-in-Craven. Grapes had been grown there & the metal arched vineries were still in use as sheds when the firm closed, approximately 2003/2004.

Local people were employed there, some for most of their working lives. The firm was a benefactor to local organisations until it closed, Mr Walter gave a children's slide to the park.

Farmers went with horse & cart to collect sawdust and wood sweepings, the sawdust was used for bedding cattle in winter. This was later thought to cause mastitis and given up. Among the sweepings were bits for kindling, small pieces of turned wood, knotted yo-yos, diablos etc.

The firm was known over the world for its small turned products. A rumour to me was that the refurbished Orient Express had toilet roll holders made by them. Their yard was filled with huge tree trunks, some bought locally.

The history of this prestigious firm would make a good project for students to study - another village industry and employment gone.

To the readers of my column, residents and Suttoners all over the world who receive the Village News, a very Happy Christmas and Serene New Year. Thanks to the many people in the village who speak to me, saying they enjoy the column and reminisce interesting bits of "Local History".

© Doris Riley 2005