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Report - British Xylonite / Wardle Storeys - Brantham, Suffolk - Oct 2014

Discussion in 'Industrial Sites' started by Boomstick84, Nov 2, 2014.

  1. Boomstick84

    Boomstick84 28DL Regular User
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    HISTORY

    British Xylonite (BX) Plastics was a former plastics engineering and production company. The company was one of three subsidiaries of the

    British Xylonite Company established by 1938. BX Plastics made xylonite (also known as celluloid or ivoride) and lactoid (also known as casein) at a plant to the south of Brantham in Suffolk, on the north bank of the River Stour across the river from Manningtree in Essex. The company was liquidated in 1999.

    The British Xylonite Company had been established by English inventor Daniel Spill in 1877, with American investor Levi Parsons Merriam.[1] It established factories at Hackney Wick and Homerton, in East London, and then expanded to Brooklands Farm near Brantham in 1887 and Hale End near Walthamstow in 1897.[2]

    By 1938 British Xylonite had established three subsidiaries - BX Plastics, Halex and Cascelloid. [3] Halex was based in Highams Park, Hale End, in North London and made finished goods (including table tennis balls). Cascelloid had been acquired in 1931, based in Leicester and Coalville, and made toys. Cascelloid was later renamed Palitoy and sold to General Mills in 1968 and then to Tonka 1987, which was acquired by Hasbro in 1991.

    Distillers acquired a 50% interest in BX Plastics in 1939, and Distillers then acquired the rest of the British Xylonite group in 1961, merging it into a 50:50 joint venture with Union Carbide's Bakelite company in 1962 to form Bakelite Xylonite in 1963. [4] Distillers sold its 50% interest to BP in 1967, and Union Carbide's European interests were acquired by British Petroleum in 1978, including the remaining Bakelite Xylonite plants.

    The Brantham site had been sold in 1966 to British Industrial Plastics, a subsidiary of Turner & Newall, who were in turn acquired Storey Brothers of Lancaster in 1977. The company became Wardle Storeys in 1984. The site finally closed in 2007 and has remained empty since.

    THE EXPLORE

    Explored with Slayaaaa, this was our second explore of the day after our main one was cut shorter than we would have liked after some lengthy cat and mouse antics with security.

    We first tried what appeared to be the semi-live site at the front without much success but heading further in we saw an interesting looking building in the distance adjacent to the railway line and headed for that, not realising the site extended further beyond the railway line.

    British Xylonite has been well reported on over the years and I wasn’t expecting much to be honest but after arriving and getting beyond the derpy main building at the front of the site I was actually pleasantly surprised. The majority has seen some serious punishment with many of the buildings being empty shells and some heavy fire damage in places however it still holds some charm and is quite photogenic in places.

    Far from the most challenging of explores, after spending the morning ducking and diving security this was a nice relaxed wander without any bother.

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    There was some kind of monument behind the front building but sadly the copper plaques indicating what it was for had long since been pinched. Seemed a strange place to have such a thing.

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    Sorry if a bit pic heavy but hope you enjoyed :thumb
     
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  2. slayaaaa

    slayaaaa 28DL Regular User
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    Those are nice, your wide angle is ace. Your shots came out really good. Thanks for coming along, was a great day. :)
     
  3. Boomstick84

    Boomstick84 28DL Regular User
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    Thanks mate, was a good day, just a shame we didn't get a little more time at our first choice :D Take two on that one ;)

    Thanks for an enjoyable day :thumb
     
  4. slayaaaa

    slayaaaa 28DL Regular User
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    Any time mate, have to get the others with us and get along to those other sites too. :)
     
  5. Boomstick84

    Boomstick84 28DL Regular User
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    Sounds like a plan mate. Looking forward to seeing your shots! :thumb
     
  6. norfolkexplorer

    norfolkexplorer av u seen my marbels
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    Nice report bud.. That place looks so trashed
     
  7. ACID- REFLUX

    ACID- REFLUX 28DL Regular User
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    Trashed but still plenty to see mate :thumb

    Nearly called here last week, wish i had now...i think :)
     
  8. Boomstick84

    Boomstick84 28DL Regular User
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    Thanks mate, yeah it's taken a serious battering!

    :D I wouldn't necessarily go out of my way for it but it's worth a wander if you're passing through and have an hour or two to spare. Still some interesting bits in places. :)
     
  9. WildBoyz

    WildBoyz Is this the future?
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    Pretty bare, but your shots are excellent. Nicely captured. :thumb
     
  10. UrbanDuck

    UrbanDuck Authorised Trespasser
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    Nice pics mate :thumb
     
  11. Boomstick84

    Boomstick84 28DL Regular User
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    Thanks man, much appreciated :thumb

    Thanks mate :thumb
     
  12. willfinch36

    willfinch36 28DL Full Member
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    Thanks for posting.

    For the record, the copper off the war memorial wasn't stolen, the council have taken it off so it doesn't get nicked!
     
  13. Boomstick84

    Boomstick84 28DL Regular User
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    Ah right, that's good to know, cheers for the heads up.

    I understand your average copper thief isn't exactly overflowing with moral fibre but desecrating war memorials for the sake of a few quid is about as low as you can get in my opinion so it's good to know they have (hopefully) been looked after. :thumb
     
  14. Session9

    Session9 A life backwards
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    Nice detail in the shots.
    Shame you didnt get into the live bit, have they put a new fence up?
     
  15. Boomstick84

    Boomstick84 28DL Regular User
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    Ta mate.

    We had a look round the site in the middle (building in the first shot on my report) but it was pretty well boarded up. We didn't get a chance to look at what appeared to be the live site on the other side of that as it was getting pretty late in the day by then. It looked quite well fenced from where we were though.
     
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