Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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W. H., B. and J. Richardson

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c.1720 Wordsley Flint Glassworks founded.

1827 Benjamin Richardson began work at Thomas Hawkes and Co, eventually becoming manager.

1828 Benjamin Richardson was hired by George and Charles Wainwright to reopen the Wordsley Flint Glass Works.

1829 Richardson, with Thomas Webb and William Haden Richardson, took over the Wordsley Glass Works as Webb and Richardson.

1836 Webb left the partnership, selling his interest in the White House Glass works, to found the firm that would become Thomas Webb and Sons. The third Richardson brother, Jonathan, then joined the firm.

1842 Officially became W. H., B. and J. Richardson.

1848 The business was in financial difficulty due to overexpansion. The glassworks were mortgaged to William Webb, Junior.

1849/52 The business continued to produce award-winning glass.

1852 W. H., B. and J. Richardson were declared insolvent. William and Edward Webb (who was running the Holloway End Glasshouse with his cousin Joseph Webb) took on the glass works; Edward and William Blow Collis took on the mortgage.

The works closed in 1852 despite success in the Great Exhibition, due to financial difficulties but were reopened within a couple of years by Benjamin Richardson.

1887 Richardson's concerns were taken over by his grandsons, becoming H. G. Richardson and Sons.

1930 The company was acquired by Thomas Webb and Sons, and the firm was operated from the Dennis glassworks which finally closed in the late 1960's.

1970s The Richardson label was used until the 1970's. Benjamin Richardson's energy and experimentation combined with the partnerships he formed led to the rebirth of English glass. This has earned him the title of 'Father of the Glass trade'. The Richardsons had extensive influence, W. H. Richardson II managed the James Couper Glassworks

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Sources of Information

  • [1] Style and Design Website
  • [2]