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Report - Hanson Brickworks, Leeds - December 2011.

Discussion in 'Industrial Sites' started by jST, Dec 29, 2011.

  1. jST

    jST LLS.
    Regular User

    Jan 15, 2009
    Likes Received:
    Almost a year after our first visit here, the post Christmas time-lag was taking its toll and the LLS took a day trip around Best and North Yorkshire.


    History is a bit hard to find, so may be slightly inaccurate as KooK had to cobble it together from various sources and I've nicked it from his report but have made various spelling and grammar "upgrades" - (no offence mate ;)).

    Surveyors started at the site in 1958, and it seems building of the plant started in 1962 finishing sometime in late 1965 with production starting in 1966. It was built and operated by George Armitage and Sons PLC, who had been making bricks in the Leeds area since 1824.

    The clay pit was "red burning" in colour so clay from other quarries, including their main works at Wakefield, to obtain the variety of colour they required. The site was originally built to produce around 30,000 bricks a day, but by 1982 was capable of 100,000. It seems average brick production in its final years was around 450,000 a week, with sales around 350,000 (they would transfer some to other sites) until the housing slump in 2007 when sales dropped down to around 250,000 bricks a week.

    The current kiln was built in 1972 and is a German LINGI, it has the capacity to fit in 46 cars (AND IS FUCKING MASSIVE) They manufactured a wide range of bricks including facings, paviors, engineering and acid resistant. They provided all 1,000,000 bricks to build Barton Square, the second phase of the Trafford Centre, Manchester.

    In 1988 it was taken over by Marshall's and the change from a family run business seemed to upset a lot of the work force. They seemed happier when the brickworks was accquired by Hanson Aggregates (not sure when), I'm sure we're all familiar with them, but there's some history here, but after a drop of 40% in sales after the deterioration of the building industry they closed the works with a loss of 45 jobs in October 2008.

    The closure seems like a real shame as it was quite evident from walking around that they were a tight knit bunch with lots of in jokes, and their newsletter 'The Jungle Telegraph' is a testament to that, as well as some of the work force being there 40+ years.

    Visited with MJS, SDW, Clough, Fowle & GeoVDubya on a day of the purest and silkiest Lols.

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