In 1907 William Paine founded this famous knitwear brand in Godalming, Surrey, and named it Paines of Godalming. Godalming was then a small town with a long history of wool production. By 1920 the business had grown to include supplying specialty shops with cable-knit sweaters, which were increasing in popularity at this time.
Alan Paine's most famous unofficial patron, the Prince of Wales ordered his own personalized sweaters, finished in his regimental colours. By 1940, Paines had gained such an unrivalled reputation for the quality of its workmanship that the company was commissioned to make woollen sweaters for Britain's armed forces, particularly the Navy.
In 1970 the company was further honored with its second Queen's Award for Outstanding Export Achievement. Wool and knitting industries were and continue to serve as important sources of income. Evidence of this survives in the town's emblem,- a woolsack - which is still in official use today and is included in the Alan Paine crest.