(Tudor to Georgian - 1540 AD to 1800 AD)
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Edward Lucas's Foundry. Gritstone entrance arch to Edward Lucas's 1790 foundry preserved in situ as a feature in what is now an ornamental garden at the junction of Lea Road and Chesterfield Road, north of Dronfield Station. A plaque gives a brief account of the factory which occupied a constricted site between the river and Chesterfield Road. (1)
The Lucas family came to Dronfield in 1811, having previously taken out a patent relating to the manufacture of malleable cast iron. They bought a riverside foundry and cutler’s works from William Colmore who, with his partner Charles Reeves, had developed it from a dyeworks. The Lucas’s took it over as an ironworks making, among other things, spindles and flyers for machinery used in the cotton industry. (2)
In 1845-6 the site included a forge, melting and steel furnaces, a counting house, warehouses, shops and a yard. The final castings were produced on December 24 1971. (3)
The arch is all that now survives of the foundary of Edward Lucas and Sons Ltd, established in 1790. In the early 19th century they made spindles and flyers for the textile industry, for a worldwide market. In 1804 Samuel Lucas patented the process of making malleable iron. Cannon balls for the Napoleonic wars were also made here. It was known locally as 'The Bottom Yard', the 'Top Yard' being on Sheffield Road (SMR 34710). The Lucas chimney contributed to the pollution in the Drone Valley. The last castings were made here on Christmas Eve 1971 before the works were demolished. The Lucas family lived at Vale House (SMR 4778) on Lea Road. (4)
Index: North Derbyshire Archaeological Trust (NDAT). North Derbyshire Archaeological Trust Index: 3645. 3645. P.29.
Bibliographic reference: Battye, K (ed). 1987. The Diary of Joseph Jenkinson of Dronfield, 1833-1843. Derbyshire Record Society Occasional Paper No. 7.
Bibliographic reference: Old Dronfield Society. 2009. Explore Dronfield, Drone Valley Heritage Trail No. 2.
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Centred SK 35295 78534 (91m by 76m)
DRONFIELD, NORTH EAST DERBYSHIRE, DERBYSHIRE
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Record last edited
May 18 2015 9:09AM
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