Company History - The 18th Century
The development of the Black Country industries
could not have occurred had it not been possible to contain the
metals within a high temperature environment. All furnaces and hearths
were lined with firebricks to retain the heat, and the local clay
was particularly suitable for a variety of uses, from Blast Furnaces
to Glass Kilns.
Fire clay was sourced from layers contained within coal seams.
It was mined from local pits, being brought to the surface in slab form and 'weathered'.
In 1739 the Old Side Works was
opened in Amblecote by the Earl of Stamford and Warrington. This
works appears to be the first recorded example of a large purpose-built
firebrick factory in the area.