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British Industrial History

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Bridgwater Iron Foundry

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Iron gates at St Mary's Church, Bridgwater, made by Browne,Watson & Murch, 1831
Cast iron cellar doors made by Murch: in Bridgwater

in Eastover, Bridgwater, Somerset

Bridgwater Iron Foundry was established c.1822 by Richard Down, who previously had foundries at Beards Yard, Langport and the Chandos Glass Kiln. [1]

1829-31 Browne, Watson, Murch and Co were the next occupants, followed, in turn by:-
1832-33 Nias and Watson
1833- Edward Murch
Murch and Spence
-1881 Murch and Culverwell
1881- J. Culverwell [2]

1830 'HEATING BY HOT WATER. Buildings, Hot-Houses,and Conservatories are HEATED by a CIRCULATION of HOT WATER through IRON PIPES, on the most approved principles, by BROWNE, WATSON, MURCH, and Co., of the Bridgwater Foundry; where every description of Article in Cast and Wrought Iron may be obtained, at short notice, on the most liberal terms. Bridgwater, December 23, 1830'[3]

1866 'A PONDEROUS Tank. — During his recent visit to this town, Mr. A. Brogden, who accompanied Mr. Vanderbyl throughout his canvass at the last election, ordered to be constructed at the Bridgwater Iron Foundry an immense cast-iron watertank, to be used for the purpose of supplying water to the engines on that gentleman’s extensive works at Porthcawl, near Swansea. This tank, which weighs three tons and two cwt;, having been Completed, was on Saturday morning last hoisted on trucks and drawn by horses to the basin float, where, by means of a powerful crane, it was hoisted on board the Elise.' [4]. Was the gentleman Alexander Brogden of John Brogden and Sons?

1876 Advert: 'BRIDGWATER IRON FOUNDRY. WILLIAM EDWARD MURCH & JAMES CULVERWELL Beg to announceto that they have purchased the whole of the Wood and Iron Patterns, Working Drawings, Machinery and Plant, lately the property of Messrs. R. and E. J. Spence, trading under the name of " Murch and Spence. "
MURCH and CULVERWELL will in future carry on the business of ENGINEERS, IRON AND BRASS FOUNDERS, IMPLEMENT MANUFACTURERS, AGENTS, &c., and all orders entrusted to them shall receive their personal attention, and be executed with promptitude and dispatch.' [5]

The site was finally used as a garage by the Bridgwater Motor Co. All traces of the foundry have been removed, the bulk of the site now being occupied by an Aldi supermarket.

See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. [1] Somerset Historic Environment Record 29522, Somerset County Council, 2014
  2. [2] Somerset Historic Environment Record No. 29522
  3. Sherborne Mercury, 3 January 1831
  4. West Somerset Free Press - Saturday 15 September 1866
  5. Bridgwater Mercury - Wednesday 17 May 1876