John Lawson Thackeray, (later mayor of Nottingham 1854-55 and 1865-66) moved down from Manchester in the 1780's, he established what we call the Forest Mills factory some time in the early to mid 1800's, just as the industrial revolution was in full flow, machines were putting people out of work and in 1811, a movement was formed by workers in the lace and hosiery industry in Nottingham, known as the Luddites. Factories and machinery, where being destroyed by this group of protesters but the government used the militia or army to protect industry, rioters who were caught were tried and hanged, or transported for life.
After the protests ended in the 1830's, John Thackeray set about producing lace to a high standard and quality, he was rewarded in 1851 when at the Great Exhibition, his lace was awarded a gold medal which subsequently gained him a full order book.
As the demands for lace declined, Thackeray's failure to upgrade machinery to modern standards forced the factory to finally close in 1950.
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