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Aberdeen, Maberly Street, Broadford Works, New North And South Mills

Flax Mill (20th Century)

Site Name Aberdeen, Maberly Street, Broadford Works, New North And South Mills

Classification Flax Mill (20th Century)

Alternative Name(s) Broadford Firehose And Canvas Works; Maberley Street

Canmore ID 291123

Site Number NJ90NW 125.10

NGR NJ 93611 06914

NGR Description Centred NJ 93611 06914

Datum OSGB36 - NGR

Permalink http://canmore.org.uk/site/291123

Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
Canmore Disclaimer. © Copyright and database right 2020.

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Digital Images

Administrative Areas

  • Council Aberdeen, City Of
  • Parish Aberdeen
  • Former Region Grampian
  • Former District City Of Aberdeen
  • Former County Aberdeenshire

Architecture Notes

NJ90NW 125.10 centred 93611 06914

New mills (North and South) built 1913, designed by Wilson and Walker. Used for carding, preparing and spinning in large fireproof red brick mill, single arches on single row of cast-iron columns.

Site Management (30 July 2008)

Large brick clad spinning mill, 4 storey symmetrical 15 bays either side of central engine house which rises further storey having terracotta wreath details. Part of large group of textile manufacturing and storage buildings, granite and brick-clad, of iron-framed or reinforced concrete construction, with setted streets between them. Slate or flat roofs.

The oldest iron-framed mill in Scotland and the fourth oldest known to survive in the world (after others of 1796, 1804 and 1805, all inter- related). The adjoining South Mill may be the third iron framed building in Scotland.

Built for Scott Brown and Co (of Angus), 1808, bankrupt 1811 and sold to Sir John Maberly MP, entrepreneur, speculator and introducer of jute to the UK. Maberley rapidly developed Broadford Works, adopting the first gas lighting of an industrial complex in Scotland, by Boulton and Watt in 1814-15, and Scotland's second power loom linen weaving factory in Scotland in 1824. Maberly was himself bankrupt and in 1834 the works passed to Richards and Co, who had a bleachworks at Rubislaw and branches at Montrose, produced canvas tarpaulins and as a particular specialism, fire hoses. Latterly man- made fibres for carpet yarn etc has replaced flax. Employment peaked at 3,000, once the largest single employer in Aberdeen. ( Historic Scotland).

Activities

Standing Building Recording (2 October 2015 - 11 January 2017)

NJ 93609 06881 (NJ90NW 125) A standing building survey was carried out, 2 October 2015 – 11 January 2017, primarily of buildings to be demolished prior to the creation of an urban village. The current condition of the buildings being retained was also recorded.

Broadford Works was originally constructed by Fenton Murray and Wood of Leeds in 1808 for Scott Brown and Co. of Angus. It went bankrupt in 1811 and was sold to Sir John Maberly MP, entrepreneur, speculator and introducer of jute to the UK. Maberly rapidly developed Broadford Works,

adopting the first gas lighting of an industrial complex in Scotland, by Boulton and Watt in 1814–15, and Scotland’s second power loom linen weaving factory in Scotland in 1824. Maberly was himself bankrupt and in 1834 the works passed to Richards and Co., who had a bleachworks at

Rubislaw and branches at Montrose, and produced canvas tarpaulins, and as a particular specialism, fire hoses. In the 1830s the business was taken over by John Baker Richards, a London merchant. Under his ownership and name the company expanded through the 19th century. By the 1880s

eight steam engines drove the plant and some 3000 mill hands were employed. The company manufactured linen sheeting, towelling, sail canvas, tent cloth and hose web. Most of the buildings to be demolished were later additions and all the older mill buildings are being retained.

Archive: NRHE

Funder: First Construction Ltd

Alison Cameron - Cameron Archaeology

(Source: DES, Volume 18)

References

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