Thomas Burberry

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Thomas Burberry
Burberry thomas.jpg
Born (1835-08-27)27 August 1835
Brockham Green
Died 4 April 1926(1926-04-04) (aged 90)
Nationality English
Occupation Outfitter
Known for Burberry
Inventor of gabardine
Religion Baptist
Children 6

Thomas Burberry (27 August 1835 - 4 April 1926) was an English gentlemen's outfitter, and the founder of international chain Burberry, one of the United Kingdom's largest branded clothing businesses. He is also known as the inventor of gabardine.


Born at Brockham Green near Dorking and educated at Brockham Green Village School, Thomas Burberry was apprenticed to a local draper's shop before he opened his outfitting business in Basingstoke in 1856.[1]

Burberry recognised the need for promotion and publicity and ensured that Lord Kitchener and Lord Baden-Powell both wore his weatherproofs.[1] By these means he expanded his business into one of the United Kingdom's largest branded clothing businesses.[1]

He retired to Abbot's Court near Weymouth, Dorset in 1917.[1] He was a teetotaler and campaigned against tobacco smoking.[1] He was also a devout Baptist who liked to hold prayer meetings every morning.[2]

He died at his home at Hook near Basingstoke in 1926, aged 90 of unspecified causes.[1]


He married twice, first to Catherine Hannah Newman and second to Mary Marshall.[1] He had two sons and four daughters by his first marriage.[3]

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