Welcome to William Lane Foundry
By Robert Nichols
Thursday 21 May 2020 11:46:00
Browse all History articles

Established in 1862, in Stockton initially before shifting over the river to Middlesbrough in 1895. William Lane is the oldest working Middlesbrough foundry and the sole survivor in the famous Ironmasters district that was once bursting with the fire, smoke and noise of furnaces.

Director Stuart Duffy has just nipped out on his bike cycling down the river in his lunch break so that gives us a chance to slip inside the gate. Fellow directors Dave and Cheryl will open the doors and we can settle in before Stuart chugs back.

Let's introduce the cast – all puns intended. Stuart joined the business in 1977 as a 15 year old apprentice, he has 40 years experience in all elements of foundry work. A passionate local historian, Stuart oversaw the “excavation” of our original 1895 foundry and loves working on heritage and restoration projects.

Fellow Director, Dave Stuart - Joined as a 16 year old, but practically a newcomer having only started in 1979, Dave oversees all elements of production alongside fellow stalwart, Stuart. An expert in moulding, pattern design and all ferrous and non ferrous metals, if it can be cast, Dave can cast it.

Then guarding the office Director, Cheryl Holley - Cheryl joined the business in 1997 and oversees the day to day running of the business from accounts to purchasing to sales, Cheryl’s been the glue that holds us together for the last 20 years.

So first we can watch a short film tour of the brass foundry and then Francis Annett will talk us around with a blog he made on a recent tour. How does that sound?

Click on this short vimeo video on to take a short tour...

This film was shown on BBC Look North in 2018 - and apprentice Sam talks us through his work.

And here is a Community Chat behind the scenes with Stuart Duffy in 2019.

Finally a lovely blog for Ageing Better by Francis Annett MBE - taking a guided tour around the Middlesbrough brass foundry.


William Lane

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