The Cotton Industry in Britain
The linen industry was in many places the precursor to the cotton industry. Apart from Lancashire, it was the staple industry in parts of Yorkshire, County Durham, Somerset, Dorset, Devon and Wiltshire. In Scotland the linen industry was widespread with centres in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Dundee, Aberdeen, and the Highlands.
In the 18th century framework knitting became closely connected to developments in the cotton industry. The main centre for the framework knitting industry had been London, but it quickly spread to the Midlands and by the middle of the 15th century Nottingham and Leicester had become the chief centres.
The linen and cotton industries grew together for a time, along with the hybrid fustian manufacture. When cotton began to predominate, it could draw upon the linen industry's skilled workforce and, outside of Lancashire, gained strongholds in Glasgow and Lanarkshire.