Our History

In partnership with the renowned Corne Family, Patey Hats can trace its roots back to 1695 when the French Huguenot Corne family arrived in London.

They brought with them the skills of Parisian hat making, and quickly established themselves as hat makers.

By the 1950′s Ray and Derek Corne, two of eleven children, were working for their uncle at Corne Brothers in Norwood South London, an area renowned for its quality hat-making.

South London paid host to over 10 hat companies, including Bowlers & Sons ltd (the home of the original Bowler), Thomas Townsend , J. Ellwood and Everoak to name just a few.

Ray and Derek’s apprenticeship commenced as children working for their father in his small workshop making hats for the film and theatre world (highlights include the creation of hats for ‘The Charge of the Light Brigade’)

In the mid-fifties, the Corne Brothers relocated to Essex, unwilling to leave their roots in Southeast London. Ray and Derek, along with Sid Patey, set up Patey Hats on the Old Kent Road and quickly established themselves as London’s premier hat makers, a tradition that remains today with their factory situated in Forest Hill. They made hats for Royalty, the Tower of London, London’s finest Hotels and many other luminaries including Stirling Moss and Juan Fangio, the finest drivers of their generation.


You can be sure that a Patey Hat will offer you the highest quality craftsmanship and expertise available in the market today.