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British Industrial History

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Northumberland Flax Mills

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of Newcastle-upon-Tyne.

1858 Sale Notice [1] : 'IMPORTANT SALE ..... All that valuable freehold propert, known as "THE NORTHUMBERLAND FLAX MILLS," Newcastle-upon Tyne, the whole of the Machinery, Engines, &c., therein complete, which have been worked by Messrs. Clarke, Plummer, & Co., for upwards of fifty years.
The Mills consist of the Old Mill, a good substantial building, three storeys high, measuring inside 72 feet and 35 feet; of the Little Mill, fire-proof addition to the Old Mill, of four storeys high, 57 feet by 32 feet inside; and of the New Mill, large New Stone Fire-proof Building, four storeys high, 99 feet by 42 feet inside, detached, but closely adjoining the other Mills, with which it communicates by Fire-proof Gangways; situated on the banks of the Ousburn, a navigable tributary of the Tyne, with large and suitable Warehouses, Sheds, Yards, &c., attached thereto, the whole of which are freehold.
The Engines, Boilers, and Millwrights' Work are all in good order, and mostly new. The Engines in the New Mill are a pair of Condensing Engines fifty horse power, each having M'Naught's Patent High Pressure Cylinders attached, and are together about 160 nominal power. They are by Burnett & Morrison, of Newcastle, and E. B. Wilson & Co., of Leeds. The Engine in the Old Mill was built by Fenton it Murray, of Leeds, but the Cylinder and all the working parts have been recently renewed; it is sixty-horse power, and is in first-rate order. There is also a small new Engine, of fourteen-horse power, for driving mechanics' shop, &c.
There are Five Boilers, all nearly new, each 30 ft. by 7 ft., with two Flues in each, and to two of them is attached Robinson's Patent Smoke Burning Apparatus.
The Millwright's Work in the New Mill, from flywheel inclusive, is all by Fairbairn, of Manchester, good, strong, and specially fitted and arranged for the purpose, and in excellent ooudition. The gearing in the Old and Little Mills is also in first-rate order, having recently been all renewed. There is also a connexion between the Mills, put up only two years ago, so that in case of accident at one side, power can be had from the other. Machinery is all new (with the exception of a few frames), having been renewed within the last four years, by the best makers, and combines all the most modern improvements.
NEW MILL.
No. 1 contains One 8 ft., Three 6 ft., and Three 4 ft. Finishing Cards, by Fairbalrn Lawson, with suitable Drawings and Rovings, Fairbairn, Lawson, Ardill & Pickard, and Lord, of Leeds.
No. 2 contains Wet Spinning Frames by Combe, of Belfast; Fairbairn, Lawson, and Newton & Taylor, of Leeds; and ranges from 20 S. to 80 S., chiefly from 22 S. to 35 S.
No. 3 contains Wet Spinning Frames, by Newton and Taylor, of Leeds, suitable for from 6 Lea to 20 S., chiefly from 9 S to 16 S. There are also Fine Stands or Frames, of Power Reels, by Lawson, of Leeds.
No 4 contains Line Preparing, by Fairbairn, Lawson, Newton and Taylor, and Lord, of Leeds, suitable for spinning. This room is in most excellent condition.
OLD AND LITTLE MILLS.
No. 1 is filled for Tow Warehousing and Sorting;, with Breaking and Waste Cards in No. 1, Little Mill adjoining, amongst which are Two large Six feet Breakers, nearly new, by Lord, in excellent order. No. 2 is fitted for Turning Bobbins, Roller and Brass Fluting, &c. .....
THE DRYHOUSE is fitttd up with two of Vetillart and M'Nab’s Patent Drying Machines, both new last year, and in first rate order.
THE DRESSED LINE CELLAR, FLAX, TOW, AND YARN WAREHOUSES Are all in good condition and excellent repair, and are well and suitably fitted for their respective purposes. There are also convenient and well-appointed Joiners’, Blacksmiths’, and Mechanics's Shops in the Old Mill Yard, with Lathes, &c., suitable for the repairs required; the largest lathe being twenty four feet bed, with Screw Cutting Motion; also, Planing and Fluting Machines, all of which are in excellent order. Gas and Water, supplied the Public Companies, are laid throughout the entire premises, and all the fittings are In most excellent repair, nearly all having been renewed last Winter. All Stores, Utensils, Tools, Bells, Cans, &c., are on hand, and in good working condition. The whole of the above, already stated, are in excellent condition, comprising 9,000 Spindles for Hot, Cold, and Dry Spinning, and 154 Spindles for Sailmakers’ Twine, &c., with all necessary preparings, and offers a valuable opportunity to capitalists, parties in the trade wishing to open branch in this district, and others; as the works can started immediately, having been in full operatiou up to recent period. These are the only Mills the North, and have old and most valuable connexion in the four Northern Counties, Yorkshire, &c. They are well situated for direct supplies of raw material from the Baltic, Belgium, and Holland; are midway between Hull and Dundee for home supplies, whence transport is cheap, and are favourably situated for communication with the Irish Market. Coals, Labour, and other manufacturing requisites are plentiful and advantageous compared with many other localities.
Apply to CLARKE. PLUMMER & Co., Messrs. M. J. L. FORSTER, and Messrs. J. BROWN & SON, Solicitors, Newcastle-upon-Tyne; or Messrs, HARDWICK, the Auctioneers, Trinity-Street, Leeds. Newcastle-upon-Tyne, September 15, 1858.'


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Sources of Information

  1. Belfast Mercury - Tuesday 21 September 1858