Former site of the Park Iron Foundry and Brick Works, Derby Road, Belper.
There are no buildings or features shown at this location on the Tithe Map of 1844 (1), and the facility first appears on the 1st edition 25" OS map of 1891, where it is shown as a relatively small L-shaped building labelled 'Iron Foundry.'
By the time the 2nd edition 25" OS map of 1900 was produced the number of buildings had increased and the area was labelled 'Park Foundry (Iron)', with a 'Brick Works' on either side.
The previous premises of Smedley Bros. Park Foundry were in New Road [SMR 17055] were too constricted to permit expansion. The business was moved to this site on Derby Road, which gave both the opportunity for further expansion and was also close to Smedley's other works, the Eagle Foundry. The move to the Derby Road site occurred in about 1898 and bricks were manufactured here until the 1920s. The original entrance archway is still standing. (2)
North of Park Foundry, a brick field was in production from the early 1880s until the 1900s and yet a further works opened up, probably in the 1890s, expanded over the next 20 years, and according to OS plans, was still operational in the 1950s but was being infilled by foundry waste in the 1970s. These two brick fields extracted mudstones between the Ashover and Chatsworth Grits. (3)
Park Foundry went out of business during the economic transitions of the 1980s, and by the time Google imagery (aerial photos) dating to 2005 was produced, most of the original buildings appear to have been demolished, and the remaining offices were replaced by 2009. (4)
An evaluation and watching brief carried out in 2018 revealed evidence of terracing, thought to have levelled the land prior to the construction of the foundry buildings. In the evaluation trenches the main external wall of a structure relating to the Iron Works, said by the excavators to have been present on site by 1891. During the watching brief, demolition rubble was found throughout. (5)
Unpublished document: Joyce, B. 2004. Notes on the land between Belper & Milford now included within the Belper & Milford Conservation Area.
Unpublished document: Thomas, I (National Stone Centre). 2012. The Lower Derwent Valley: The Exploitation and Use of Historic Building Materials. p 23.
Unpublished document: Burpoe, M and A Mora-Ottomano (ARS Ltd). 2016. Heritage Impact Assessment and Historic Building Appraisal Derwentside Industrial Park, Belper.
Unpublished document: Strafford, L and R Jackson (ArcHeritage). 2018. Derwentside Industrial Park, Belper, Derbyshire: Archaeological Evaluation and Mitigation Report.
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SK 3501 4628 (point)
BELPER, AMBER VALLEY, DERBYSHIRE
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Record last edited
Feb 27 2020 10:52PM
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