It all began with one man and his RAF uniform

In 1948, Alfie Lever, a tailor’s son from the East end of London returns home from the RAF in search of a new adventure.

Inspired by the utilitarian designs of his former RAF uniform, Alfie sets out to conquer the outerwear world.

(Top Image) Alfie Lever- the man who started it all.
The original parka that Alfie made for the RAF in 1953.

Alfie Lever’s Spitalfields factory


52 Commercial Road, E1

In the heart of Londons East End, Alfie opens his first factory in 1953, Alfred Lever & Co is born. Known then as a Mantle Manufacturer, a term for a loose-fitting outerwear garment, the company wins contracts to produce outerwear pieces for the RAF, including the legendary Parka.


Supply and Demand

Not content with sitting on his military laurels, Alfie takes on the fashion world. Supplying some of the most fashionable boutiques of the time, including John Stephens on Carnaby Street and Village Gate in Soho, with his RAF inspired outerwear.

(Main image) Quadrophenia film extras wearing Parkas

(Left) Original sketch of our P53. (Right) Uncle Ralph at the sewing machine

Stephen Lever aged 16 (the next in line)


Learning the ropes

Growing up in the factories, Alfie’s son, Stephen takes an interest in his father’s world. From sitting with Nelly, the button lady, to later delivering orders to customers, he learns the skills of the trade. Working closely alongside his father for the next decade, the future is bright for the Lever family business.


Realising Dreams

Stepping fully in to his fathers’ shoes, Stephen takes the reins. Using his expert knowledge and experience he skilfully guides the business through a landmark period of its history. In reaction to market demands, production is moved offshore for the first time. The company is re-branded as The Harvest Group.

The iconic member’s Only jacket designed in 1981

Parka London AW18 and our signature back neck eyelet


Parkas for All

During this period, the company grows to be one of the major players in British outerwear supply, working with nearly all the major High Street brands at some point. Unknowingly, chances are high you will have already worn a piece of outerwear that we have designed and made.


A New Decade, Perfecting the Parka

With 60 years of manufacturing heritage behind us, it was time to step in to the limelight with our own label.

PARKA LONDON is a tribute to Alfie Levers original vision and his legacy.

The brand is a celebration of the iconic, timeless military designs fused with contemporary modern styling and fabrics. Our mission is simple, we aim to make the best Parka available today, that is our mantle.


Parka Online

Parka welcomes Alfie’s Grandson Josh, who focuses on the digital consumer, future proofing the brand for the savvy online shopper.

Maintaining the same long lasting quality and saluting the styles imagined by his grandpa’s military vision, our range is expanded with its unique timeless DNA.


The New Normal

As we enter in to the new-normal, in a post-pandemic world, our cultural values and priorities have shifted. PKL drives a focus on resilience, adaptability, comfort and full-on protection, without compromising on style - so we can spend as much precious time outdoors, whatever the weather.

All walks of life, all weather, all year round, we’ve got you covered.