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Object Of The Week : Keystone Knitting Mills

Wednesday 24 June 2020

Whilst the Museum is closed and our collections unable to be seen by visitors, we have created a weekly virtual museum with an Object of the Week feature from our collections.

Object of the Week : K is for Keystone Knitting Mills

Keystone Knitting Mills was a major employer in Borehamwood for more than 40 years.  Keystones was built in 1927 and opened a year later on a site between Glenhaven Avenue and Clarendon Road now occupied by ‘the Boulevard’ shopping park. The factory  produced pure silk seamed stockings and lingerie.  The Museum has a large collection of items relating to Keystones, including a letter of a job offer.  People would come from as far away as the North of England to work at the factory after the Depression in the early 1930s. During the Second World War, part of the factory was taken over for munitions work and silk parachutes were produced on site.  It was also used as a drawing office for aircraft parts.

Some of the Museum volunteers had relatives who worked in the Factory.  Actors and Actresses modelled for the company, which made a great deal of garments for the film industry. Fully fashioned stockings went out of favour in the 50's  and tights were manufactured instead. Keystones closed in 1958 and moved to Wales. The site eventually became the Boulevard in the 1980s. Here are images of their silk thread and stockings, their local activities, and the current Keystone Passage in the 1980s before demolition.




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