Herring and Alfred Sargent

Herring is basically the cheapest welted shoe brand in the UK, however it is not low at all, because it is a select shoe shop with private label made by shoe factories in Northampton.

Royal Collection is the top line of Herring which is made by Alfred Sargent and priced at £395. I bet this is the best price you can get for a pair of Alfred Sargent.

Henry in Royal Collection

And this collection uses oak tanned soles which are probably from English tannery J. F. Baker. This is already a great value for the price, but there is something more, the branded shoe tree is complimentary!

Herring Branded Shoetree
Herring Branded Shoetree

Unfortunately, this collection has been cancelled by Herring.

We have seen this situation everywhere, Alfred Sargent was also making private label for A Fine Pair of Shoes, and the collaboration ended earlier. Now, it’s Herring’s turn.

Alfred Sargent for A Fine Pair of Shoes

Alfred Sargent even has little interest in his own brand, and styles haven’t been updated in a long, long time.

Alfred Sargent Handgrade is regarded wonderful shoes!

It all started when Chay Cooper left to join Crockett & Jones.

Chay Cooper and Paul Sargent
Left is Chay Cooper and right Paul Sargent

After Alfred Sargent stopped making private labels, Carlos Santos filled up. But this was also a clear change in style and taste.

The style is orthodox, but patina is Carlos Santos’ own flavor.

Herring’s premium collection is now made by Cheaney, just like Wildsmith brand in its last few years. At one time, Wildsmith was also made by Alfred Sargent.

Wildsmith made by Alfred Sargent

We can compare the extremely similar styles of Herring and Alfred Sargent. On the left is Herring’s Henry II and on the right is Alfred Sargent’s Keats.

Lasts are different and Keats is close channeled Goodyear construction. But these are just choices made by Herring maybe for differentiation or different price points.