Grace's Guide To British Industrial History

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Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 163,138 pages of information and 245,599 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 147,919 pages of information and 233,587 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Joseph Bradbury (Manchester)

From Graces Guide

of Brook Street Iron Works, Charles Street; Pritchard Street, Chorlton-on-Medlock, Manchester. Same place?

1883 Listed in Slater's Manchester & Salford Directory, 1883 (Part 2) as Engineers & Machinists

1895 Listed in Slater's Manchester & Salford Directory, 1895 (Part 2) as a hydraulic engineer and steam press maker

1892 'The initiation of this noted business dates as far back as 1846, when operations were commenced by Mr. George Bradbury, who developed the concern with considerable energy and ability. In 1864, the present proprietor, the son of the founder, assumed the control of affairs, and under his spirited and skilful administration the increase in the extent and value of the business has been of the most gratifying kind. The premises occupied consist of a commodious three-storey block of building, with frontage of forty feet and depth of the same extent, comprising floor and basement, fitted up with machinery driven by a powerful steam engine, and used for general workshops, well-appointed offices and fitters’ rooms on the second floor, and store-rooms on the third floor’. The internal arrangement and equipment are of the most satisfactory kind.

'The proprietor conducts a large and important business as a steam, hydraulic, and general engineer, maker of hay and straw presses, and all kinds of wood-working machinery. All the work issuing from this establishment is well known through the country for its general excellence and thoroughly reliable quality. ..... One of the great specialities of this firm for which they have gained no inconsiderable reputation, is Mr. Bradbury’s patent hay press, the cheapest, most durable, and fastest worker in the market. Another one, their latest production, is a straw-trussing machine, by which straw is received from the thresher, and by simply moving one lever, the truss is pressed, bound by automatic knots, and then thrown out of the machine automatically. The demand for these excellent machines has been very satisfactory, and it is continually increasing both at home and abroad. The Gloucestershire Agricultural Society signified their appreciation of the high merits of the former in 1889 by awarding it their medal, and the trials that were instituted by the Royal Agricultural Society at Nottingham demonstrated unmistakably the absolute superiority of these machines; in fact, wherever shown, used, or tested, it has received universal commendation. Simplicity is one of its chief recommendations, as it never gets out of order. The machine is portable; it can be used by one man, who can cut, compress, and tie from three to four tons of hay in a day.

'Mr. Bradbury has effected many valuable improvements in the construction in machinery, and everything he turns out is sure to be absolutely up to date in its construction and accessories. His band-sawing machines are among the best procurable. Among other specialities for which the house is noted, we may mention Mr. Bradbury’s self-acting saw bench, with rising and falling spindle; with his latest patent apparatus for tennoning, which is almost equal to an ordinary tennoning machine and the cost about one-eighth. This has proved to be of great value to joiners and builders, especially to those in a small way of business. One great feature is that when not in use this does not interfere with the utility of the saw bench in any way. Also pendulum cross-cut saw machine, steel saw spindles, bow saw frames for cutting cold iron (a most ingenious and valuable invention), all kinds of planing and moulding irons for machines, and every other requisite for sawmills. Every article is fully guaranteed to be of superior quality, and terms are so arranged as to suit all customers. ......'[1]

Goad's Insurance Plans for Manchester, Map No. 52 (updated c.1899) indicates that the premises would have been cramped and cosy, the ground area being no more than approx 40 ft by 40 ft, with one of the three storeys (plus basement) accommodating a steam engine and horizontal boiler. The northern side of the works was immediately adjacent to the viaduct of the railway connecting Oxford Road and London Road Stations. Immediately south was the 'Lass O'Gowrie' pub, (still in business). Adjoining on the western side was the stained glass works of James Jones. The eastern boundary was defined by the River Medlock, while on the opposite bank of the river was the southern annexe of the extensive works of James and John M. Worrall. Looming on the other side of the viaduct was Mynshull Mills, Chorlton-on-Medlock

See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. [1] THE CENTURY'S PROGRESS - LANCASHIRE. The London Printing and Engraving Co., 1892. Hosted by MESSYBEAST.COM