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Monument record MDR5471 - Dale Abbey Ironworks (site of), Furnace Pond, Dale Abbey

Type and Period (2)

Protected Status/Designation

  • None recorded

Full Description

Furnace pond presumably related to Dale Abbey Ironworks. The ironworks was built in 1788-9 with one blast furnace. A second furnace was added in 1801 but the ironworks went bankrupt in 1805. Source (1) implies that the ironworks itself may have been at or near Grove Farm, Stanton (SMR 26501). (1) A site visit showed no indications of a furnace site by the pond, but there was a slag-paved trackway leading towards Bassett Farm. The furnace and tramways would repay further site investigations. (2) In 1789, according to Pilkington, "the foundations of one (a furnace) have also been laid very lately between Dale and Stanton. But the execution of the undertaking is at present suspended, if not entirely given up". The undertaking was eventually carried out, and the site is still noticeable in the Pond Close, a field partly in Dale and partly in Stanton. The furnace pond still remains and the offices have been converted into three cottages. One of the blast-engines from here was, until recently, and may still be, used at the modern Stanton Ironworks. The stone-built house at the Grove Farm [SMR 26501] is said to have been built for the manager of the works". (3). The ironworks at Dale does not seem to have come into full operation until the end of 1798, by which time an iron railway had been laid down to the canal, probably ending alongside the side-cut near Sow Brook. Since the list of the associated foundry products at this time contained a reference to gangway rails, it is possible that the tenants of the ironworks made their own railway material. The Dale ironworks had been a very long time coming into production since its initial inception in 1787-8; its failure was comparatively rapid. It was offered for sale in May 1803, complete with two blast furnaces, one of them only two years old, and the canal running 'through the premises', yet only three years later Farey reported that it had been pulled down. The remaining assets included one narrow boat, a number of gang-waggons, cranes in the foundry and at the wharf and four pit gins standing at the Hagg and in Lady Wood. (4) These may have been the remains of an iron smelting furnace that then became known as Stanton Ironworks. A site visit in 1997 identified circular footings no more than 1m in diameter and small pieces of 'slag-like' material. The First Edition Ordnace Survey also shows coal pits, iron pits, sand quarries and linking railway lines between Dale Abbey and Stanton Iron Works, so it is possible this is the area. (5)

Sources/Archives (5)

  • <1> Bibliographic reference: Chapman, S. 1981. Stanton and Staveley, a business history. pp 26-37, 50.
  • <2> Personal Observation: Cranstone, D. 1985. Site visit to Dale Abbey Ironworks, 1985.
  • <3> Article in serial: Burton, R. 1913. 'Notes on the antiquities of Stanton-by-Dale', Derbyshire Archaeological Journal. Volume 35, pp 75-98. p 98.
  • <4> Bibliographic reference: Stevenson, P. 1970. The Nutbrook Canal, Derbyshire. pp 59-60.
  • <5> Correspondence: Atkinson, J. 2005. Letter re two Derbyshire Archaeological/Historical Sites, sent to County Archaeologist 04/03/2005. Letter.



Grid reference Centred SK 449 387 (187m by 157m) (Centre)

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Record last edited

Jun 18 2015 3:49PM

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