Not boring at all! Thank you for your input.Your question is spot on and the answer to it answers your original post. I own loads of Edward Green shoes, three C&J handgrade shoes and loads of Church's shoes, plus 12 pairs of Gaziano and Girling shoes. All answers are subjective - apart from informed opinon of quality of materials. So here's what I think:
I do not now buy C&J handgrades ( partly because of them being too narrow to be honest) , so more relevantly I've stopped buying Church's - I've been spoilt! Edward Green has spoilt me - they are lovely lovely shoes. One must wear them not just look at them to find the difference and discover why they cost so much more. They fit the foot better than C&J and just feel "right". If you'd never had EGs you'd be very happy with handgrade C&Js provided your feet fit the one width they do!
And that's the other thing about EG and G&G I so value - you can ask for any width fitting there is and they'll do it for you without the astronomical surcharge C&J ask for. G&G is just as good. Steve on Leffot blog makes the same point about G&G
Finally EG tell me their leather is better quality and that the higher quality leather you want the less of it there is at market so operations any bigger than them just cannot obtain the best leather. I suspect the sole leather, whilst very good on Handgrades is also better on EG but no proof of that.
So much more I could say but I've bored you enough now!