Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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Timothy Burstall

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Timothy Burstall (1776-1860).
Burstall and Hill Steam Coach.

Timothy Burstall (1776-1860) of Leith

c1776 Born in Lincolnshire

1804 Marriage to Charlotte Radwell at St. Martin in the Fields, London

Previously Burstall and Hill makers of steam road coaches (T. Burstall of Edinburgh and J. Hill of London)

1824 Built a steam coach (details in 'British Locomotives'). States 'Burstall and Hill of London'. Burstall and Hill’s first steam carriage, built in 1824, failed from the common cause of being cumbersome and exceedingly heavy which, together with the bad road surfaces, resulted in the machinery being shaken to pieces. In an attempt to overcome these problems by experiment they next built a quarter-scale model which they exhibited first in Edinburgh, as this broadside announces, and afterwards in London. The model was 5ft 6ins long and 1ft 10ins high and worked at a pressure of 25 psi. It is reported to have been a success but a full-size version never materialized. Details and image in 'British Locomotives'

1825 February 3rd. Patent for T. Burstall of Bankside, Southwark and J. Hill of Greenwich for a locomotive or steam carriage for the conveyance of mails, passengers and good. [1]

1825 Details of the steam carriage for roads being built at Saw Mills, Leith. [2] [3] [4]

1825 November 14th. Marriage to Mariann Price at Leith

1826 October. Trials along the Ferry Road at five or six miles an hour. [5]

1827 While running in London at their enclosure at New Bedlam, Westminster Road, the boiler burst injuring a boy, the brother of Mr. Hill. [6]

1827 Exhibit a model of their steam carriage in Edinburgh with a detailed description. [7]

1829 Built the Perseverance for the Rainhill Trials

1841 Living at St Peter and St Paul, Somerset (age c60), a Civil Engineer. With Timothy (age 11 born Scotland) and Timothy (age 3 born Scotland) (note: all three are listed as Timothy Burstall). [8]

1860 December 7th. Died at Glasgow


See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. The Derby Mercury (Derby, England), Wednesday, April 13, 1825
  2. The Morning Chronicle (London, England), Saturday, September 10, 1825
  3. The Morning Post (London, England), Saturday, September 10, 1825
  4. Caledonian Mercury (Edinburgh, Scotland), Saturday, September 24, 1825
  5. Glasgow Herald (Glasgow, Scotland), Friday, October 27, 1826
  6. The Morning Chronicle (London, England), Friday, July 27, 1827
  7. Caledonian Mercury (Edinburgh, Scotland), Thursday, December 20, 1827
  8. 1841 Census
  • Steam Locomotion on Common Roads by William Fletcher. Published 1891.
  • British Steam Locomotive Builders by James W. Lowe. Published in 1975. ISBN 0-905100-816
  • British Locomotives by C. J. Bowen Cooke. Published 1893