Grace's Guide To British Industrial History

Registered UK Charity (No. 115342)

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 163,107 pages of information and 245,598 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.

W. J. and J. Garforth

From Graces Guide
1849 Cast iron bridge (foreground) at Castlefield Basin, Manchester. The modern building (YHA) behind the two dark iron columns is on the site of Kenworthy's boatyard
1851 drawing of Garforth's Steam Riveting Machine

W. J. & J. Garforth of Dukinfield (and Manchester?).

Associated with W. and A. Garforth of Ashton-under-Lyne, Manchester. [1]

The company was in business for twenty-five years

1839 'NOTICE is hereby given, that the PARTNERSHIP subsisting between us the undersigned JOHN GARFORTH. the elder, WILLIAM GARFORTH, JOHN GARFORTH, the younger, and JAMES GARFORTH, in the trades or businesses of iron founders, steam engine boiler makers, millwrights, and machine makers, carried on in Dukinfield, Chester, under the firm of "John Garforth & Sons" was DISSOLVED by mutual consent, on the twenty-seventh day August last. And that all debts due or owing to or by the said partnership, will be received and paid by the said William Garforth, John Garforth, the younger, and James Garforth, by whom the business will in future be carried on —As witness our hands this thirteenth day of December, one thousand eight hundred and thirty nine…..'[2]

1844 Produced iron castings for bridges for the Ashton Branch Railway, including the Dukinfield road bridge.[3]

1846 Great interest aroused by a steam riveting machine invented by James Garforth and demonstrated at the works in Dukinfield[4]. See 1851 Great Exhibition: Official Catalogue: Class VI.: William, John and James Garforth.

1849 Newspaper report about the progress of the Manchester, South Junction and Altrincham Railway: '.....On the Altrincham Railway there will eighteen bridges, the principal one being that over the Mersey near Stretford, about seventy feet span, of wrought iron; and a tubular bridge, the principle which Mr. Fairbairn, the eminent engineer, of Manchester, has carried out successfully in many places. There is a cast iron bridge over the Duke’s branch canal, near Mr. Kenworthy's works, of about 105 feet span {see photo}, and there is another of similar character over Egerton-street, Hulme, 52 feet in span. There is likewise a bridge over the canal near to Cornbrook, made of cast iron, and 80 feet span. The four last noticed bridges are from the establishment of Messrs. Garforth, of Dukinfield, ironfounders....'[5]

1849 The Floating of the Britannia Bridge: '.... The total weight of wrought iron in the tube floated on yesterday is 1,600 tons. It has been constructed Messrs. Garforth, of Dukinfield, Manchester, and the others by Mr. C. Mare, of Blackwall.' [6]

1851 Award at the 1851 Great Exhibition. See details at 1851 Great Exhibition: Reports of the Juries: Class VI.

1884 Sale Notice: 'Dukinfield Ironworks, near Manchester.—To Engineers, Boiler Makers, Iron Bridge Makers, Ironfounders, Brokers, and others. WILLIAM GRUNDY SON are favoured with instructions SELL BY AUCTION, Wednesday and Thursday, March 26th and 27th, 1884, commencing each day at eleven o'clock in the forenoon prompt, the premises, Dukinfield Ironworks, near Manchester (late in the occupation of W. and J. Garforth Limited), the Whole of the Valuable PLANT, MACHINERY, and TOOLS, made principally by Whitworth. Collier and Co., Berry and Sons, Garforth, etc.; comprising steam boiler, 26ft. long, 6ft. 6in. diameter, and fittings; egg-ended ditto, 20ft. By 4ft. 6in.; two horizontal steam engines, with 12in. cylinders, 18in and 24in. stroke; pair of ditto, 9in. cylinders, 18in. stroke; pair of ditto, 5in. cylinders; horizontal pump, 21 lathes, , from 5in. to 40in. centres, on iron beds, to 38ft. long; special pulley turning lathe; four self-acting planing machines to take in from 1ft. 9in. by 1ft. 9in. to 5ft. 6in. by 5ft. 6in., and tables from 2ft. To 19ft. 9in. long; radial and vertical drilling machines; two shaping machines, 9in. and 6in. stroke; nut ditto, 3in. stroke; slotting machine, 18in. stroke; cotter hole machine and drill combined; vertical boring machine; two screwing machines; 15-ton overhead power travelling crane, 37ft. 9in. span, by Milburn, and wood gantry ; a hand ditto, 28ft. 6in span, with ditto; four Wellington cranes, 37ft., 35ft., and 24ft. span; jib, foundry, and smiths' cranes; shear legs and crab; Scott's improved wheel moulding machine, three cupolas, brass furnace, core stoves, and carriages; fan; Root's blower; 6ft. loam mill; two steam rivetting machines, 5ft. Oin. and , 3ft. 8in. high; two sets of plate-bending rolls, flanging and punching and shearing machines, heating furnaces, rivet hearths, 5cwt.and 1½cwt. Steam hammers, bolt oliver, 12 smiths hearths, grindstone and iron trough, saw bench, 30-ton waggon weighing machine, 5-ton cart ditto, platform and pig scales, shafting, steam, water, and gas pipes, iron rails, vices and benches, boiler testing pumps, iron racks, boiler bogies, blocks and chains, anvils and blocks, joiners' benches, wood saw bench, store racks, strapping, boring tackle, steel and iron tools, bolts, new spades, office furniture, iron safes, wheel and other patterns, and sundry effects —May be viewed on Monday and Tuesday, March 24 and 25, from ten to four, and catalogues (without which no person will be admitted) may be had from the Auctioneers, 54, John Dalton-street, Manchester.'[7]

Stationary Steam Engines and Boilers made by Garforth

Sale Notice, 1884: ' King-street Mills, King-street, Stalybridge, the Valuable STEAM ENGINES, Boilers, Millwrights' Work, Piping, &c.; comprising horizontal condensing steam engine, cylinder 27in. diameter, 3ft. 8in. stroke, in very excellent condition; beam condensing steam engine, cylinder 32in. diameter, 5ft. 6in. stroke, by Garforth, Dukinfield; horizontal high-pressure steam engine, cylinder 14in. diameter, 2ft. 9in. stroke, by Gimson, Stalybridge; cylindrical steam boiler, 30ft. long, 8ft. diameter, with two flues through, mountings, complete, by Garforth, Dukinfield; ditto, ditto, 27ft. long, 7ft. 6in. diameter, by Fernihough....'[8]

Sale Notice, 1900: 'ALL those Valuable WORKS and PREMISES called the Clayton Dye Works, situate off Clayton-lane, Manchester, in the County of Lancaster (including two boilers and one beam engine, by Garforth, Dukinfield, about 50-h.p., with the rope pulleys used in connection therewith, and the steam piping connecting boilers to engine; one wrought iron boiler tank to receive condense water from engine, one two-inch injector, line shafting in tbe two-storeyed building, one pair of horizontal high-pressure engines, 14½in. cylinder, and one or two lengths of shafting, and one pair of beam engines, by Garforth,....' [9]


1847-48 Sub-contractor to Sharp Brothers and built 8 locomotives for the Sheffield, Ashton-under-Lyne and Manchester Railway.[10]

  • 2-4-0 locomotives nos 32 FURY and 33 VULCAN
  • 0-4-2 locomotives nos 37 MENTOR, 39 MARS, 40 TRITON, and 41 NEPTUNE
  • 0-4-2 locomotives nos 42 TAURUS and 43 PLUTUS

1850 Sub-contractor to Sharp Brothers and built two locomotives for the South Staffordshire Railway.[11]

  • 0-6-0 locomotive (possibly an 0-4-2) no 10 BELVIDERE
  • 0-4-2 locomotive no 11 ANGERSTEIN

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. The Engineer 1875/06/18
  2. Manchester Courier and Lancashire General Advertiser, 21st December 1839
  3. Manchester Times, 1 June 1844
  4. Glasgow Herald - Monday 23 February 1846
  5. Manchester Courier and Lancashire General Advertiser, 19 May 1849
  6. Dublin Evening Mail - Friday 22 June 1849
  7. Manchester Courier and Lancashire General Advertiser, 15th March 1884
  8. Manchester Courier and Lancashire General Advertiser, 5th July 1884
  9. Manchester Courier and Lancashire General Advertiser, 10th February 1900
  10. Sheffield, Ashton under Lyne and Manchester Railway from British Locomotive Catalogue Vol 5B by Bertram Baxter, pages 160 and 161
  11. South Staffordshire Railway from British Locomotive Catalogue, Vol 2A by Bertram Baxter, page 32
  • British Steam Locomotive Builders by James W. Lowe. Published in 1975. ISBN 0-905100-816