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British Industrial History

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J. D. Leigh and Co

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1879 advert

of Patricroft, Manchester, maker of stationary engines. [1].

1868 Partnership dissolved between Joseph Dorning Leigh and William Leigh as J. and W. Leigh[2]

Company formed by Joseph Dorning Leigh

1872 800 HP two cylinder winding engine at Acton Hall Colliery, Featherstone. [3]

c.1874 Made a large cylinder (84" bore, 10 ft stroke) for a Bull-type pumping engine being installed at the Imperial Gold Mine, Thames, New Zealand. Other parts of the engine were made locally and also by the Union Foundry, Ballarat and Langlands & Co of Melbourne, Victoria [4]

1879 Listed as Joseph D. Leigh of Patricroft, Colliery Engineer [5]

c.1890 Horizontal two cylinder steam winding engine at Writhlington Colliery, Somerset. Photographed by George Watkins in 1965. Thought to have been secondhand when brought to the colliery. Cylinders 28" bore, 4' 6" stroke. Drum 22 ft diameter. [6]

1893? Two cylinder winding engine at Lewis Merthyr Colliery, Trehafod. Photographed by George Watkins in 1967.[7]

1896 Premises and equipment of Ellesmere Foundry advertised for sale.[8]

J. D. Leigh & Co winding engine at Cresswell Colliery, No. 2 shaft. Two 25" cylinders, 4 ft stroke, Eatock's patent slide valves, 11 ft diameter drum.[9]


SG 21st November 2011 writes:

In addition to the Frog Lane engine they are known to have constructed the following winding engines (all twin cylinder horizontals), this list is obviously incomplete but will need to serve until additional materials emerge

  • Braysdown Colliery Company, Braysdown, Radstock Somerset. c.1862 26”x48” winding from around 580 yds (source Down and Warrington P201/2))
  • Writhlington Colliery, Radstock (possibly secondhand here). c.1870 28”x54”. Slide valves, Gooch link motion, piston tail rods, flat eccentric rods 12’drum winding from 500yds. Replaced by electric winder in 1966 (source George Watkins and Down and Warrington)
  • Lord Vernon, Poynton and Worth Collieries, Park Pit. 1875 – 30”x72”, Cornish valves, parallel cast iron drum 16’ diameter. From C 1885 wound Lawrance Pit (310 yd deep) from same engine house. Engine used until colliery closed in 1935 (source Geoff Hayes)
  • Geo Insole and Son, Cymmer Jubilee Colliery, Upcast Shaft. c.1877 - 28” x54”, plain 11’ drum, winding from 360 yds. Colliery closed in 1940 and engine presumed scrapped (source Rhondda Collieries, John Cornwell, Vol 1 P49 1987 D. Brown and Son ISBN 095926822)
  • Bridgewater Trustees, Ashtons Field No 1 Pit, Farnworth, Nr Bolton. 1880 - 30”x 60” , Corliss valves ( according to the National Association of Colliery Managers visit in 1922) Engine used until colliery closed for coal winding in 1931 (source Geoff Hayes)
  • Fernhill Colliery, Blaenrhonnda. 1881 JW Leigh 25”x 60”, Slide Valves and Gooch valve gear, parallel drum 12’x 6’6”, post brakes and Whitmore controller by H.J.H. King of Nailsworth. Engine worked latterly on compressed air, disused by the time of Geoff's visit on 23/9/1980 and subsequently scrapped (Source Geoff Hayes)

See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. 'Stationary Steam Engines of Great Britain: Vol 10' by George Watkins
  2. [1] The London Gazette, June 2, 1868
  3. "Steam Engine Research Resources" compiled and published by Stanley Challenger Graham on LULU.com. 2009
  4. 'The Engineer' 13th March 1874
  5. 1879 Slater's Directory of Manchester and Salford
  6. 'Stationary Steam Engines of Great Britain, Volume 7': The South & South West, by George Watkins, Landmark Publishing Ltd
  7. ‘Stationary Steam Engines of Great Britain, Volume 4: Wales, Cheshire & Shropshire‘, by George Watkins, Landmark Publishing Ltd
  8. Sheffield Daily Telegraph, 2nd May 1896
  9. Derbyshire Courier - Saturday 10 September 1910