SALES of Dr Martens shoes and boots grew significantly last year as the British brand enlarged its global footprint and attracted new customers.

Revenue at the company was up 30% to £454.4 million in the year to March 31.

Meanwhile, underlying earnings rose by 70% to £85 million.

Growth was recorded across all channels, with retail revenue up 30%, while e-commerce jumped 67%.

Sales in stores were boosted by the opening of 20 new sites during the year, as well as strong like-for-like growth of 18%.

Chief executive Kenny Wilson said several factors had driven the company’s growth during his first year in charge.

“It’s a great brand, we’re taking it to more people, and we’ve got a strategy that’s working,” he said.

“Is there a cultural moment? I think there’s many interesting things happening around the world.

“It’s a brand for independent free thinkers, and if you look at protest and rebellion for a brand that’s about rebellion, there’s a lot going on.”

He said that the firm’s vegan range, which now accounts for around 4 to 5% of sales, is set to continue growing rapidly as more consumers ditch leather.

Earlier this year the business doubled down on its commitment to British manufacturing, investing in its Northampton facility to increase the amount of shoes made in the UK.

Mr Wilson said it was “full steam ahead” at the factory.

There are currently no new store openings planned for the UK, with the brand instead focusing on a rollout in France and Germany, as well as key sites in North America and Asia.

But Mr Wilson remained confident in physical outlets.

“I think stores are still important, but we believe that in a fast changing retail environment it’s important to be selective about the places that we pick.”