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British Industrial History

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Norton Iron Co

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of Stockton-on-Tees.

Iron producers and bell founders.

1854 Thomas Horsley was given the task of erecting the Norton Iron Works, near Stockton-on-Tees.

1857 George Hampton was foreman to the masons of the Norton Iron Blast Furnaces[1]

1865 Prospectus: 'THE NORTON IRON COMPANY (LIMITED). ….
William Barrett, Esq., Messrs. Warners, Lucas, & Barrett, ironmasters, Stockton-on-Tees.
Edward Lord, Esq., Messrs. Lord Brothers, machinists and cotton spinners,
Joshua Murgatroyd, Esq., Messrs. Emmerson and Murgatroyd, engineers; Stockport.
William Neild, Esq., the Dallam Forge Company (Limited), Warrington.
Joseph Smethurst, Esq , Messrs. Martin and Smethurst, engineers, Guide Bridge.
F. Warner, Esq., Messrs. Warner and Sons, hydraulic engineers, Jewin Crescent, London
William Warner, Esq., iron merchant, Stockton -on-Tees.
The above have been selected from the list of shareholders recently published. .....

'.....This Company was formed for the purpose of purchasing the plant, freehold property, stock-in-trade, and goodwill of the firm of Messrs. Warners, Lucas and Barrett, of Norton, near Stockton-on-Tees, and of working the same. An agreement for purchase ..... The property consists of three blast furnaces, producing 30,000 tons of pig iron annually, and foundries casting from 400 tons of railway chairs and general castings, per week. The works are situate on 23 acres of freehold land, adjoining the West Hartlepool Railway, a siding from which runs into the works.
By special agreement with the Railway Company the firm are able to ship at West Hartlepool at an exceedingly low rate, including the cost of putting iron free on board, guaranteed for term of years. It is proposed to extend the foundry department of the trade, and also erect a rail or plate mill, which can be done at moderate outlay, although the return on the business will be thus very much increased. The present members of the firm retain their interest in the new Company. The decease of Mr. Lucas, of the Coal Exchange, who was a large proprietor of the firm of Messrs. Warners, Lucas, and Barrett, is the chief reason for the formation of the Company, although it is undoubtedly the case that a limited company with large resources possesses many advantages over ordinary partnership. The whole of the plant in first-rate working order. The extensive connections of Messrs. Warners in the London and other markets are well known. The present time is remarkably advantageous for the purchase of such works, as, after many years of comparatively low prices in the iron trade, since the termination of the American war a marked improvement has taken place in the demand for iron, and there is no doubt that the producing powers of the ironworks of Great Britain will be taxed to the utmost......'[2]

1870 Patent to Thomas Stammers Webb, of Norton Iron Works, Metallurgical Chemist, in respect of the invention of "improvements in the manufacture of iron and steel."[3]

1880 Under an Order of the High Court, the Norton Iron Works Estate, and the Norton and Billingham Mill Estates, together with the iron foundry, buildings, and manufactory, and all other the property and effects of the Norton Iron Company Limited, were to be sold[4]

See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. London Gazette 31 March 1857
  2. Birmingham Daily Gazette, 21 September 1865
  3. London Gazette 11 January 1870
  4. London Gazette 23 January 1880