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British Industrial History

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Hexthorpe Railway Wagon and Ironworks

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of Hexthorpe-with-Balby, Doncaster

1871 'Shocking Accident at Doncaster.—An inquest was held yesterday at Hexthorpe, near Doncaster, before Mr. E. Nicholson, county coroner, touching the death of a lad named Rennie, eight years of age, and the son of a coachbuilder, who had died in consequence of severe injuries received by the upsetting of a ladle of molten metal at the foundry of Messrs. Radcliffe and Nuscheler, Hexthorpe. The deceased, with a companion named Willis, and several other boys were at play near the works, and several times crept inside, child-like, to see what was going on. They were warned off by the foreman, but again came back, as a ladle containing two tons of molten metal was being hoisted by a crane from pit beneath. The crane broke, and the vessel was precipitated to the ground, the burning metal running in all directions. Rennie was only four yards off. and his clothes immediately caught fire. Platts, the foreman, rushed promptly to his rescue, and tore the clothes off his back as quickly possible, but the poor little fellow was dreadfully burnt, as also was the lad Willis, the other boys being less severely injured. Rennie and Willis were at once conveyed to their homes, and attended by Mr. Connor, assistant Dr. Dunn. Rennie, however, died some twenty-four hours afterwards, and Willis remains in a critical state, but hopes are entertained of his recovery. The jury returned a verdict of "Accidental death," and commended the foreman for his conduct in the matter. They, however, recommended that the works should be more completely fenced off, and that a stronger chain should be attached the crane in question.'[1]

1871 Advertisement: 'TO IRON FOUNDERS, ROOF, BRIDGE and railway waggon builders, important sale of extensive freehold iron WORKS, PLANT, STOCK, and FIXTURES. To be SOLD, by AUCTION, by Messrs. HEPPER and SONS (of Leeds), at the Rein Deer Hotel, Doncaster, on Monday, the 11th of December, 1871, at Three o’Clock in the Afternoon precisely, by order of the Inspectors of Messrs. Ratcliffe and Nuscheler, subject to Conditions of Sale, which will then be read :
All those valuable FREEHOLD PREMISES, situate at HEXTHORPE, near Doncaster, in the County of York, known as the "HEXTHORPE IRON WORKS," comprising Iron and Brass Foundries, Smiths' and Fitters' Shops, Pattern Shop, Waggon Repairing Shed, Iron Re-heating Furnace, Temporary Shed, Store Rooms, Offices, and Out-buildings, Together with all the valuable MACHINERY in the Works.
The Premises are replete with Machinery, all of which is modern, by the best makers, and in thorough Repair. It consists of Machines for Punching, Shearing, Drilling, Slotting, Plate Bending, Iron Straightening, Wheel Turning, Screwing, Planing, Turning, &c, and the whole is driven by a Horizontal Engine, with Cornish Boiler.
The Foundry has an independent Boiler, and the Cupola is worked by Woodward's Patent Blast. There is a Ten-Ton Crane in the Foundry, and a Thirty- Ton Traveling Crane in the Yard.
The Works Stand on an Acre and a quarter of Land, and adjoin the Manchester, Sheffield, and Lincolnshire Railway, from which a siding runs into the yard, connecting the Works with the principal Railways; and they are exceedingly well adapted for Iron Roofing, Bridge and Girder Building, Boiler Making, General Smithing purposes, Colliery, Wrought and Cast Iron Works, and the Building and Repairing of Railway and Tram Waggons, in all of which departments the Works have a high reputation for excellence and a good connection.
A Bed of Moulding Sand of the best quality underlies a portion of the Site.
The Stock of Iron, Steel. Metal, Timber, Foundry Boxes, and Tools. Smiths' and Fitters' Tools, Wrought and Cast Iron Work for Waggons, and all requisites for successfully carrying on the business of the Works are to be taken by the Purchaser at a Valuation, in accordance with the Conditions of Sale. N.B.— Possession of the Works can be had by 1st January. l872. For further particulars and for leave to view the Premises, apply to Samuel Weitham, Esq., Calder Vale Iron Works, Robert Stockil, Esq , Doncaster; Mr. Crooks, the Inspector's Manager, at the Works; the Auctioneers, at Leeds ; or to Messrs. FERNANDEZ and GILL, Wakefield, and F. W. FISHER, Doncaster, ,) Solicitors to the Inspectors. Doncaster, 16th November, 1871.' [2]

1873 Proprietors: Ratcliffe & Nuscheler

1875 Proprietors: Nuscheler & Co

1873 'Doncaster West Riding Police. — A man named Robert Gelder, who did not appear, was charged at this court on Saturday with an assault upon Henry Nahbolz [Nabholz? Brother of Karl Emil Nabholz?], foreman at the Hexthorpe Iron Works, near Doncaster. On Tuesday last the defendant, who is a boiler smith, was at the works when complainant made some complaint to him about going to a public house, and after a few words between them Geldert went away, but presently he returned, and without any further words knocked Nahbolz down and gave him a couple of black eyes. — Fined £5, or two months in default.'[3]

1874 'The New Railway Bridge at Retford. — In order to provide means for laying down a greater number of sidings near the goods warehouse recently erected by the Great Northern Railway Company, a new foot bridge is being erected to span the line. The structure will be completed in about three weeks. The material is wholly iron. The ornamental castings of the balustrades add greatly to its architectural beauty. It is 160 feet long by 5½ feet wide, and is supported by cast iron pillars. Mr. Nushler [sic], of the Hexthorpe Iron Works, Doncaster, is the contractor. The present bridge will be knocked down.; its removal about a couple of hundred yards to span the Babworth crossing is seriously contemplated. Difficulties, however, attend the adoption of this scheme, because the view of the signals by the engine drivers would be partly obstructed.[4]

1881 'HEAVY FAILURE-LIABILITIES £100,000. A petition for liquidation was filed yesterday. at Manchester County Court on behalf of R. Olive, of the Woolfold Railway Waggon Works, Bury; the Springside Waggon Works, near Bury; Hexthorpe Waggon and Iron Works, Hexthorpe, Doncaster, carrying on business as Jno. Olive and Son, railway waggon builders and wheel and axle makers; and at the Burr's Paper Mills, near Bury, and Cannon-street, Manchester, as a paper manufacturer. The liabilities are estimated at £100,000. The assets are considerable.[5]

1881 Land, buildings and plant advertised for sale.[6]

M. A. Nuscheler

Matthias Albert Nuscheler, engineer, Doncaster, married Frances Appleyard, of Leeds, at St. John's Church, Leeds[7]

See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. Leeds Mercury, 16 June 1871
  2. Sheffield Independent - Saturday 02 December 1871
  3. Sheffield Independent, 19 May 1873
  4. Nottinghamshire Guardian, 27th November 1874
  5. Leeds Mercury, 21st April 1881
  6. Sheffield Daily Telegraph, 26 August 1881
  7. Leeds Times, 28 August 1869