Scotland is still prominent in technical textiles today and, arguably, represents about 20% of the total UK commercial effort in this sector. The sector is growing at around 5% per annum.
Technical textile production in Scotland is far from new. Two hundred years ago, Nelson’s fleet at Trafalgar was fitted with sail canvas manufactured by Baxters in Dundee.
The variety of technical textiles produced in Scotland is immense, and covers a huge range of applications. Just to give some examples:
Bonar Yarns and Fabrics are prominent in the manufacture of artificial grass for football and hockey pitches.
J&D Wilkie produce a variety of technical fabrics, including camouflage fabrics, filtration fabrics and heat shield fabrics.
Scott and Fyfe make fabrics for the agricultural, automotive and sports markets.
Don and Low, founded in 1792, make both nonwoven fabrics (for roofing membranes, cladding etc) and woven fabrics (e.g. for geotextile materials).
The Survitec Group produce survival garments and life jackets for personnel in the offshore oil and gas industries and for sections of the armed services.
Owen Sails are leading sail-makers.
The leading manufacturer of wirecloth in the UK is United Wire, a company founded more than 175 years ago.