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Report - - Fox Brothers, Tonedale Mill and Dye Works. Wellington, Jun 21 | Industrial Sites | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - Fox Brothers, Tonedale Mill and Dye Works. Wellington, Jun 21


albino-jay

28DL Regular User
Regular User
History

The company was officially founded by Thomas Fox in Wellington 1772, after taking over the family business from his father, Edward. At this time, it is believed that the company employed up to 450 people in and around the area.

During the Industrial Revolution in the early 19th century, the company brought the entire production process in house. With the wool sorting, spinning, drying and weaving processes all under one roof, the Fox family were able to exert more control over quality and increase production. Not only was the total production housed on the one site, but ancillary crafts also took place at the mill. These included basket weaving; to produce the baskets used for holding wool and yarns, joineries; for the wooden requirements of the site, book binding; to produce record and accounts books as well as metal forges and workshops, to produce and maintain the machinery.

At its peak the company employed approximately 5,000 people and owned and operated nine mills and factories in Somerset, Devon, Galashiels and Oxfordshire.

The Fox family had their own legal tender from 1787 until 1921; Lloyds bank in Wellington is to this day known as the Fox Branch.

From the late 19th century into the 20th century, production became increasingly focused on fabrics for the British military. During the Boer War, Fox Brothers developed the new serge drape mixture know as 'khaki', which eventually led to the demise of the British Army's traditional 'redcoats'. During the First World War, Fox Brothers completed the largest ever, single order for textiles: 852 miles of cloth supplied to the Ministry of Defence. This was used to make 'the puttee' - spiral leg puttees were used by the military as a part of the regular soldier uniform.

Explore

It’s a classic, we’ve all seen it on here, most have been. I haven’t, again it just goes back to me being either too lazy to travel back then, or I just couldn’t be arsed. Either way the time was now, and it still is a brilliant place to see. Some very old machinery in both sites, it’s had a bit of a tidy up too in the dyeworks. Since my visit it would appear the roof has collapsed in the engine house though, which is a shame, but not surprising. It was a bit of a last minute thing so we started to run out of light only getting there in the evening but we managed to cover quite a bit.

Pics - Mill Porn

I’ll start off with the engine house containing a George Mills & co of Radcliffe Steam fire pump engine, what a beaut. And a rather large WH Allen T47 Diesel lump, and then the usual Mather & Platt goodies.

























Thats a Iphone 11 pro max just for scale.





The boiler house, which currently has a few lancashire boilers in place



Still even got a bit of coal!









Then onto the rest of the mill site.

















Clinging on by a ratchet strap




 

albino-jay

28DL Regular User
Regular User









And off we Trott to the dyeworks!

So far Tonedale has had everything, and no it gives me mileage. YES



Bit stripped and battered but still



Reet big belt drive and some more Mancunian engineering







Some more Northern goodies























The recent clearing and works was to fit these towers and support the roof.

















 

ikkdjct

28DL Regular User
Regular User
I am so jealous. Visited twice now and always find a security car parked in front of the engine house.

Looks like they cleaned up the Dye Works. Great photos, nice report.
 

mookster

grumpy sod
Regular User
Best set of photos I've seen from both places for ages. I remember you messaging me about it before you went!

I was gutted to hear about the roof of the engine house, it's such an incredible room.
 

albino-jay

28DL Regular User
Regular User
Best set of photos I've seen from both places for ages. I remember you messaging me about it before you went!

I was gutted to hear about the roof of the engine house, it's such an incredible room.
Cheers Ben! It was deffo your recent pics of the engine house that spiked my interest i completely forgot all about it until you told me. Yeah it’s a shame the roof has come down ontop of it all, glad i managed it just in time!
 

host

28DL Regular User
Regular User
Another epic explore mate and beautifully shot. Looks like you had a good year.
 

KPUrban_

28DL Regular User
Regular User
Oh that's a stunning one.
Even the graffiti doesn't overshadow the machinery and decay.
 

Calamity Jane

i see beauty in the unloved, places & things
Regular User
Oh that's stunning extensive coverage. Every shot shows something great. Its got everything a great mill could have. Loving the old signage too. Shame some of it is collapsing but what a great explore. Looks like there is industrial goodness round every corner. Cracking report.:cool:
 

TheTimeChamber

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
This is probably one of my favorite explores! What's happened to the roof of the engine house?

I don't recognise this, I thought I had covered everything:

 

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