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Report - N Corah & Sons, St Margaret's Works Leicester, Aug 2013

Discussion in 'Industrial Sites' started by dweeb, Aug 19, 2013.

  1. dweeb

    dweeb Super Moderator
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    This place has been done to death, and rightly so. Huge industrial complexes of this size and age are a rarity in Britain these days, and Corah can fill the better part of a day and you can still leave and miss huge chunks.

    I started out exploring derelict hosiery factories as a teenager. Back then the small Leicestershire town of Hinckey, which was described as the "cradle and home of the Hosiery trade" offered some very nice derelict factories for the budding explorer to see. It was these hosiery factories that taught me there was romance in industry, that in some cases there was very old and interesting things to find in derelict factories and most importantly the skills of hunting for access, playing the waiting game and how to avoid getting caught. I also took my very first 'exploring' photo in a hosiery factory.

    Skip past a decade and I've done it all from climbing 200 foot chimneys to crawling around deep underground in mines, but I never lost that romance and curiosity I held for the hosiery industry and it's associated buildings. Corah could really be described as the daddy of them all. The complex is a mish mash of styles and ages of buildings, cobbled together as the firm grew. It is commonplace to see fancy brickwork and bricked up windows on internal walls throughout the works, as one building was built against another. Another curiosity is the constant crossing of bridges tacked onto the side of buildings to join the new addition to the rest of the works.

    Obviously the time to have seen this place was when Corah actually ceased trading. After this much of the works was split up into various uses, and a small portion of the place is still in use from everything from costume hire to the building's original purpose, hosiery manufacture.

    I've been here several times but I was not really very happy with my photos, so as I was in the area to see my folks I thought I'd swing past and spend a bit of time poking about and taking some snaps. Here are the fruits of my labour.

    A very early view of the works, and a picture of the party thrown to celebrate the work's electric lighting installation, from my personal collection.


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    Note the Mather and Platt water powered bell.
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    Ornate brickwork on what is now an internal wall is exposed as the woodwork rots away
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    Ornate ironwork hidden by not one, but two suspended ceilings
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    Ditto, with a nice lampshade also hanging above
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    Another example of an external feature which is now inside a later addition
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    Firewatchers tower, which still contains squat bunk beds
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