CLOSURE OF FIRM AND REDEVELOPMENT OF SITE

Scope and Content

Early's purchased John Cockcroft & Sons Ltd, of Todmorden, Yorkshire, in 1988, with a view developing a wider range of furnishing products. In 1989 the existing company was split into four separate divisions: Property Division, Household Textile Division, Carpet Division, and John Cockcroft & Sons Ltd.

All 4 divisions of the company were purchased by Grovewood Securities PLC, with a view to selling off the large amounts of land around Witney owned by the company in order to release capital. The Carpet Division, renamed Warlord, was sold off shortly afterwards.

Grovewood Securities went into receivership in October 1991, simultaneously forcing Early's into receivership. The Early's business and trade name was acquired as part of a management buy-out in December 1991. The remaining land holdings were bought by All Souls College.

Early's was bought again in 2001 by Aster Holdings but closed a year later after being forced into voluntary liquidation due to declining trade. The remaining business and the Early's trade name was acquired by Quiltex of Derbyshire, and manufacture of blankets in Witney ceased on 19th July 2002.

The majority of the sites owned by Early's have been subsequently redeveloped for housing.