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Report - Langley Maltings, The Wolverhampton & Dudley Breweries, Oct 2010

Discussion in 'Industrial Sites' started by TranKmasT, Oct 19, 2010.

  1. TranKmasT

    TranKmasT We're Earth explorers
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    On the evening of 8th September 2009 fire broke out in the derelict Maltings in Western Road, Langley. Half of the roof of the grade two listed building was destroyed before the fire was put out, and three of its characteristic outlet towere destroyed. So, another iconic building in the history of Oldbury is damaged or lost.

    The maltings were erected by Walter Showell around 1880 on the side of the Titford Canal to supply malt to his new 'Crosswells Brewery' a hundred yards away across the railway line. This was one of the largest breweries in the area, and Showell's Ales were distributed throughout the Midlands. Local barley was used in the malting process, supplemented with grain brought in by barge and, later, by railway.

    Malting ceased in 2006, and the building was sold by its owners,Wolverhampton and Dudley Breweries, in 2007, since when it has been allowed to deteriorate. It was one of the last maltings to still use the traditional 'floor' malting process: the grains of barley were steeped in water and then spread over the floor of the maltings, the mass being frequently turned to permit even germination. At the end of the twentieth century, there were only five maltings in the country still using this process.

    It is a striking building, rising from the side of the canal, the water at the base of its walls, and a feature of the canal walk from Oldbury locks to Titford Pool. This was not its first major fire. On 25th September 1925 the maltings caught fire and half of the building destroyed. Added hazards in 1925 were the location of the Shell-Mex petroleum tanks next to the maltings, and tar wagons in the railway yard opposite: both long since gone. On that occasion,the maltings were part of a commercially successful operation, and were quickly rebuilt. Their future now is much less certain, but it is to be hoped that they can be retained and a new use found for them.

    (taken from "The History of Oldbury" http://www.historyofoldbury.co.uk/2latestnews1.htm)

    Previous reports by Dweeb, Raddog, Adders, Filthy Sparrow, Mr PK and more recently Kempes.

    I visited this first on my lonesome and then returned with Donebythehands.

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    2)Bite said Fred!
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    5)Ben Hur
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    13)Found a hose gun on the floor probably used for washing down the vats.
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    21)A large paper air filtration system
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    22)I'd love a big f@ck off front door like this...
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    25)Jeff Nash's training certificate. It's a little sad to see
    that someone made an attempt to preserve this by wrapping
    it in cling film, but to no avail as the moisture crept in.
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    29)Poor Henry
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    No HDR in my pictures apart from picture 28. The original was overblown so I merged two RAW pictures.

    Thanks....
     

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