Institute for Creative Leather Technologies (ICLT)

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What is the Institute for Creative Leather Technologies (ICLT)?

The Institute for Creative Leather Technologies (ICLT) is a unique research and education centre. Our research responds to the scientific and technological needs of the automotive, fashion, footwear and allied leather industries.

Understanding new and traditional leather processing techniques expands the possibilities of how leather can be used. Our research programme has an impact on diverse sectors, including medical and technological applications.

The partnerships that we have also take leather developments into engineering, media and fashion.

Latest News

UON Leather Expert to give keynote lecture at global industry event

photo of Tony Covington, Emiritus Professor, ICLTA vastly experienced leather scientist from the University of Northampton will be sharing his wisdom at a prestigious industry event.

Emeritus Professor from the University’s Institute for Creative Leather Technologies, Tony Covington, will give the keynote lecture at this year’s International Union of Leather Technologists and Chemists Societies (IULTCS) Congress.

Prof Covington will deliver the Heidemann Lecture, where he’ll draw upon his extensive experience and knowledge in undertaking research and development in leather science.

Professor Covington has a doctorate in physical organic chemistry at Stirling University in Scotland and postdoctoral research in physical chemistry at the University of Newcastle. He was also awarded the world’s very first Doctor of Science (DSc) degree in Leather Technology in 2010, by the University of Northampton.

Professor Covington has authored over 300 technical publications, receiving over 2,600 citations in the literature. Together with co-author Dr. Will Wise, he published a second edition of his book on leather science in 2019.

Professor Covington is a former President of the International Union of Leather Technologists and Chemists Societies, who presented him with their Merit Award for Excellence in the Leather Industry in 2009. He received the Alsop Award for Outstanding Scientific Contribution to the Leather Industry from the American Leather Chemists Association in 2011.

  • Logo for Leathersellers' CompanyThe Leathersellers’ Company is one of the ancient Livery Companies of the City of London. Founded by royal charter in 1444 with authority to control the sale of leather within the City. It no longer has this regulatory role, and instead devotes its energies to support for charity, education and the British leather trade. The company has supported the leather provision at UON for many years.



    Logo for The Girdlers' CompanyThe Girdlers’ Company is one of the ancient Livery Companies of the City of London. The company has been operating since 1328 and historically involved in providing standards and enforcement for the manufacture of girdles (or belts). The company now acts on a charitable basis which includes supporting educational needs, including supporting leather students at UON.


    Logo for Leather UKLeather UK represents the entire UK leather industry at a national and international level. The organisations also works closely with and influences education faculties to support and develop the next generation of leather technologists and design and fashion students. Working closely with Leather UK greatly enriches the student experience for leather students here at ICLT and UON.


    Logo for Leather Conservation Centre

    The Leather Conservation Centre offers a comprehensive service in the conservation of leather objects of historic, cultural and artistic importance for national and local museums, historic houses and private clients. The LCC engages in training and research into improved methods of leather conservation.


    Logo for Museum of Leathercraft

    The Museum of Leathercraft is based in the heart of the UK’s leather and footwear industry, Northampton.  Their unique focus on leather makes it a valued resource for aesthetic, technological and design studies and is on the doorstep to the ICLT on Waterside campus.