Report - - WH Shaw and Co, Dobcross Works, Diggle, December 2017 | Industrial Sites | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - WH Shaw and Co, Dobcross Works, Diggle, December 2017


feeling drained?
Regular User


(pinched from a previous report by @The Lone Ranger because I'm lazy and can't do any better than this anyway)

'By far the most impressive building in Diggle is the Dobcross Loom Works; built in 1860 and located on the Canal side of Huddersfield Road about 300 yards from the junction with Standedge Road. For 37 years until 2006 it had been the home of Shaw’s Pallet Works, reputedly one of the largest pallet works in Europe.

The stunning building at the entrance known locally as ‘The Cathedral’ the main building housing the clock tower. The building with the clock tower is a Grade II listed building and any future development of the site will have to incorporate that building into their plans.

Nothing is left of the loom works, but the Pallet Works’ site, covers 22 acres, is up for re-development, interestingly, the buildings were used for munitions in World War I and for making parts for Russian submarines in World War 2.After over 36 years of making wooden pallets, and a major employer of the village, W.H Shaws factory closed down in 2006 after going into administration. It is more than likely that the whole site will be turned into a major housing development..

There was a huge auction at the factory on the 7th March 2007 when to name just a few of the items sold were Eight Fork Lift Trucks,Pallet Trucks, Climax 90 Sideloader, Ford Agricultural Tractor, Rolls Royce Diesel Generator, Wellman Robey Ygnis & Senior Green Gas Fired Steam Boilers, Atlas Copco Air Compressors, Pressure Washers, Welding & Fitters Shop Equipment including Mig Tig Welders, Cut Off Saws, Power Hacksaw, Drills, Degreasing Bath, Collectible Office (Partners Desk & Boardroom) Furniture & Equipment including computers, Canteen & Kitchen Equipment. Three Scania Sleeper Cab Tractor Units, Leyland Daf 85 330 Shunter Tractor Unit and a Ford Transit 190 Dropside Tipper. At one time the factory even had its own buses transporting staff to and from the pallet works.'

The Visit

One from the end of last year, visited with @Sheard - this was a hurried third choice, on a pretty bleak day, after an earlier fail to get in somewhere better. Considering this, it was an enjoyable wander. On arrival, making our way round the perimeter of the works, we heard an alarm already going off somewhere on site. We hung back to see if anyone would emerge from the building, but nobody appeared. Testing to see if security turned up we took a few pictures of the tunnel behind the site that takes you under the canal at the back. Although it's only short it's really dark and some light painting shows up some nice aged stone work.

Back to the main event, it seemed that nobody was going to be arsed to turn up for the alarm, which had now stopped, so we carefully made our way on site trying to avoid the PIR sensors dotted about the site. Working on the (wrong) assumption that they'd be centred around the listed part of the building at the front we took a few quick external photos and headed inside.

Unfortunately we didn't make it into the listed offices section at the front of the site....

...or the tunnel which connects the two sections....

... so the rest of the photos were taken in the part of the site pictured here...

Downstairs first...

Then up these...

Upstairs, more open spaces...

Step into my orifice...

These patronising motivational signs were spotted around the factory floor and office, featuring the American Dennis the Menace (some Dennis back-story here)

Couple of... things...

Up again...

Spacious roof terrace...

And a few other bits and pieces...

Up to this point things had been quiet, but leaving this building we managed to set off an alarm ourselves. Finding we were now being watched by everyone out walking their dogs we decided that this was as far as we went for now and bailed via the nearest poorly maintained fence.


feeling drained?
Regular User
Nice mate. Always fancied this one. Keep forgetting about it. Shame you didnt manage to get into the offices.
Cheers. Yeah to be honest we were hindered by the alarms, the time of day and what seemed to be some new boards (judging from some other reports).

The Lone Ranger

Safety is paramount!
Staff member
It's not a bad mooch even now, and that tunnel is always worth a play.


Exploring with Bob
Regular User
It’s a nice wander. Keep meaning to have a pop back and see if anything has changed.


feeling drained?
Regular User
It’s a nice wander. Keep meaning to have a pop back and see if anything has changed.
Think it was your report that I found when we needed to hastily replan this day! Looks like they’ve wacked up some more boards since your visit, particularly over the tunnel doors as we couldn’t even see into that.
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28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
I saw this in one of your pics above and was waiting for some kind of comment! Nice article mate!