Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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Woodhouse and Mitchell

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June 1898.
August 1899.
February 1901.
January 1902.
February 1952.
April 1952.
Beam engine rebuilt by Woodhouse and Mitchell in 1904. Probably dates from c1870. Exhibit at Bolton Steam Museum.
Beam engine rebuilt by Woodhouse and Mitchell in 1904. Probably dates from c1870. Exhibit at Bolton Steam Museum.
1887 Corliss engine at Armley Mill Museum
Woodhouse & Mitchell lathe
Type 369 (36" x 9" table) Turret Mill

of Clifton Bridge Ironworks, Brighouse, Yorkshire, maker of stationary engines[1], the firm also produced milling equipment for flour and oil seed.

1881 Following the death of Joseph Wood on 7 August, the partnership of Wood, Baldwin and Co was dissolved, and a new company was formed.

1883 John Baldwin retired from the business; Wood, Baldwin, Mitchell and Woodhouse became Woodhouse and Mitchell, a partnership of Richard Woodhouse and Samuel Mitchell.

Franciscus Gilbertus Schippers came to Brighouse from Holland in the 1880s, and stayed with the company for 50 years, becoming Chief Mechanical Engineer in 1910 and joining the partnership. He died on 2 November 1936. He is credited with introducing the uniflow engine to Yorkshire.

1887 Horizontal tandem compound Corliss condensing engine at 100 hp. Exhibit at Armley Mill Museum. Donated by Mr J Howarth, Glovers Chemicals

1896 Woodhouse & Mitchell had their own type of release gear for the Corliss valves, designed in 1896 by one of their engineers, an American named Arthur Herschmann.

1902 the firm became Woodhouse & Mitchell Ltd.

1906 1000 HP vertical compound engine for George Street Mill, Brighouse. Cylinders 23" and 47", 3 ft stroke, Corliss vlaves, Proell governor, 90 rpm. Flywheel 16 ft dia, 10 ropes.[2]

1926 Richard Woodhouse retired, and was succeeded as Managing Director by Joseph Mitchell.

1934 Joseph Mitchell died. Company bought by John Illingworth, and re-registered as Woodhouse and Mitchell (1934) Ltd. He was a director of Widdop, Shackleton and Co who had an adjacent factory in Brighouse. They were to diversify, with products including machine tools.

1939 See Aircraft Industry Suppliers

By 1951 the firm had been taken over by Thomas W. Ward of Sheffield.

1962 Merged with Frederick Town and Sons of Halifax.

Maker of machine tools under the Woodhouse and Mitchell and Town Woodhouse names at Wakefield Road, Brighouse, under the ownership of Thomas W. Ward.

c.1967 The Clifton Bridge site closed.

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. Stationary Steam Engines of Great Britain by George Watkins. Vol 10
  2. Brighouse News - Friday 12 January 1906
  • A short history of the company by Geoff Shackleton was included in an International Stationary Steam Engine Society Bulletin in 2017 from which much of the above information has been extracted. Source: "Woodhouse and Mitchell, Engineers and Millwright, Clifton Bridge Ironworks, Brighouse, West Yorkshire" by Geoff Shackleton, International Station Stationary Steam Engine Society Bulletin Vol 37, No.4, December 2017.