Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 130,460 pages of information and 207,760 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

Rowhedge Ironworks Co

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1955. 'Ngaroto'. Ship No. 837. In c2005 working on Lake Rotorua in New Zealand.
1955. 'Ngaroto'. Ship No. 837. In c2005 working on Lake Rotorua in New Zealand.
Small triple expansion marine engine at Swansea Museum Collection Centre
Small triple expansion marine engine at Swansea Museum Collection Centre
83 IHP marine engine.
Stern wheel engine.

Rowhedge Ironworks was based on the river Colne at Wivenhoe near Colchester

1904 The yard was established by three former employees of Swan, Hunter and Wigham Richardson Walter Oxton, Frank Maslen and Lewis Foster. They specialised in small tugs, barges, launches, stern-wheelers and other small craft.

1909 Maslen and Foster went abroad and Walter Oxton became the chief

1915 Harris Brothers boat yard located on the River Colne at Rowhedge, Essex. Established by Peter Thomas Harris 1865, later run by his sons Enos and John Thomas Harris. Yard taken over by Rowhedge Ironworks circa 1915.

1937 Walter Oxton died and was succeeded by Frank Butcher

WWII The yard built four standard coasters, three "VIC" type Clyde puffers, two torpedo recovery craft and tow coastal tankers.

1946 The Hotspur IV was built by Rowhedge Ironworks for use on the Hythe Ferry.

1946 Frank Butcher died and Donald Thomas Oxton became MD

1950s In the post war years the yard specialised in building "flat pack" ships for re-erection overseas.

The yard was closed in 1964.

See Also

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Sources of Information

  • British Shipbuilding Yards. 3 vols by Norman L. Middlemiss
  • Steam Engine Builders of Suffolk, Essex and Cambridgeshire by Ronald H. Clark. Published 1950 by The Augustine Steward Press