The manufacture of floorcloth was related to varnish, said Eric Montague in his Mitcham Histories: 8 Phipps Bridge, page 80:
… used considerable quantities of the ‘foots’ of matured varnish, together with condensed ‘gum fumes’ and ‘black oil’, vapours involved in the making of black Japan lacquer.
A photo from 1869 by Tom Francis of the factory buildings in Morden Road, is available on Merton Memories.
Related News Articles
30th July 1910
DEATH OF MRS. HARVEY.
—On Wednesday morning the remains of the late Mrs. Harvey, mother of Mr. R. M. Harvey, organist at the Parish Church, and Mr. T. P. Harvey, manager of Harland’s Varnish Works, were interred at the Norwood Cemetery. Mrs. Harvey’s husband was a partner in the firm Harvey & Wright, floor cloth manufacturers, who used to carry on business in Morden-lane. For the last few years she lived at Brixton and the funeral took place from her residence there.
Source: http://www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk/viewer/bl/0000945/19100730/096/0005 from the British Newspaper Archive (subscription required)