Tyne and Wear HER(3056): Usworth, Washington Chemical Works - Details
Usworth, Washington Chemical Works
Chemical Production Site
Washington Chemical Works were set up by Hugh Lee Pattinson, co-founder of Felling Chemical Works (HER ref. 3537), with Robert Stirling Newall in 1842, producing a range of products, but concentrating on the production of magnesia. By 1850 the works were producing magnesia, carbonate of lead, alkali, lead oxide and soda crystals. Pattinson was responsible for developing a specialised process of manufacturing Carbonate of Magnesia. That the works were producing soda crystals by 1850 suggests the setting up of the Leblanc process and the development of a large scale works probably not dissimilar to that at Felling. The works were in decline by the end of the 19th century and ownership was transferred to Newall's Insulation Ltd in 1903-8, subsequently Newall's Insulation and Chemical Company, under which name it remained until closure.
1st edition Ordnance Survey Map, c.1855, 6 inch scale, Durham, 13; I. Ayris, Washington Station and Washington Staith - Industrial Development, Brief summary; F. Atkinson, 1980, North East England - People at Work 1860-1950; Archaeo-Environment Ltd, 2004, Washington Chemical Works - desk based assessment; Archaeological Services Durham University, 2014, Teal Village Farm, Washington, Tyne and Wear - building recording