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Tyne and Wear HER(3452): Blaydon, Sanitary Pipe Works/Harriman's Pipe Works - Details

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Blaydon, Sanitary Pipe Works/Harriman's Pipe Works




Pottery Manufacturing Site

Pottery Works

Early Modern


Documentary Evidence

Sanitary Pipe Works shown on the OS 1st edition {1}. This site is now used as a depot. The rectangular down draft kilns still remain in situ {2}. Harriman’s Fireclay works grew to become a large and important manufactory of salt-glazed sanitary pipes and white glazed enamel ware on Tyneside, it being one of the first firms to cater for the demands of local government on Tyneside for better sanitation, and continued to supply this need for 120 years. In 1845, Harriman went into partnership with Mr W Dodds of Lemington to set up a new firebrick works at Blaydon Haugh, with river frontage and its own siding onto the North Eastern Railway. Fireclay was supplied by Stella Coal Company from 1847-1868 and taken to the works by wherries on the river, or wagons on the railway. From 1857-1862 fireclay was also obtained from Whickham Colliery. In 1858, the works gave preference to manufacture of salt-glazed ware and firebricks were of secondary importance. In 1881, the old firm of Harriman and Company was wound up and a new company formed. The Blaydon works comprised moulding, engine and boiler houses; six drying flats; joiners and smiths workshops; press room and clay room; sand and salt storage sheds; a five-room dwelling house and a warehouse; offices and stabling; 16 old kilns and two new kilns. The plant and machinery comprised a vertical steam engine, horizontal steam engine, pipe machine, small upright boiler and engine, pug mill and grinding mill with screen, brick making machine, three hand-operated brick presses, wagons and trucks. In 1883, the company leased the firebrick works next to Eltringham Coal Company and secured a direct source of fireclay. In 1889, two muffle kilns were built and a new sink moulding and drying flat was made at Blaydon, for the increased demand for white glazed sinks. The lease was ended in 1891 and in 1892 the works at Blaydon were extended. Four new downdraught kilns were built and other extensions made in 1894 when the neighbouring old bottleworks site was acquired. A new moulding shop, dipping shed, warehouse, mechanics shop and brick press shed were erected. In 1899, a circular kiln was demolished and an oblong downdraught kiln built in its place to burn glazed enamel bricks. After a lean period in World War I, the works returned to profit and kilns and buildings were repaired. Two Ruarden pipe machines and a horizontal pug mill with mixer were bought, as well as a new steam engine. In 1932, a new moulding, glazing, and packing shed was built. And in 1934, a new de-airing plant was installed. In 1933 there were ten downdraught kilns making salt-glazed ware (five circular and five rectangular); the circular ones were replaced over the next 20 years by rectangular ones. In 1953, the adjoining Blacking Factory site was acquired. Three large circular downdraught kilns were built in 1966, 1968 and 1972, their flues connected to a 120ft high chimney built in 1966. The underground flues were periodically cleaned out, their walls being stripped of their deposits of rock salt. The kilns changed over from coal to oil firing in 1962. 1847-1975 (appears to be the on same site as brickworks 1875, Graham’s yard) Source: Davison, P J, 1986. Brickworks of the North East, 133, site 26, 139-44




<< HER 3452 >> 1st edition Ordnance Survey Map, c.1855, 6 inch scale, Durham, 2 Tyne and Wear Industrial Monuments Trust, Blaydon and Winlaton Plan; papers for William Harriman & Co, brick and sanitary pipe mfrs, Blaydon: records c1890-1978, Tyne and Wear Archives DX952; William Whelan, 1856, History, Topography and Directory of the County Palatine of Durham

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