From the late 19th century until the middle of the 20th century, Fox Brothers’ production became increasingly focused on fabrics for the British military.
During the Boer War, Fox Brothers developed the new serge drape mixture know worldwide as ‘khaki’, which was given Royal approval by the Prince of Wales in 1900 and eventually led to the demise of the British Army’s traditional ‘Redcoats’. During the course of the war Fox supplied the government with 30,000 yards of khaki a week.
During the First World War, Fox Brothers supplied over 8,000 miles of cloth to the British and Allied governments, including the largest single order for textiles placed during the war: 852 miles of cloth supplied to the Ministry of Defence to make ‘puttees’. Spiral leg puttees were used by the military as a part of the regular soldier uniform.
The image below shows an interesting advert placed by Fox Brothers in the Sydney Mail, on 16th June 1919 after WWI had ended and production capacity was again available for civilian cloth.
"Established in 1772 by Thomas Fox, Fox Brothers is one of only a hand full of working cloth mills left in the UK. "