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Thread: British Nylon Spinners, Pontypool – August 2017

  1. #1
    Join Date
    August 2014
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    Default British Nylon Spinners, Pontypool – August 2017


    The history

    in 1939, ICI took out a licence to manufacture nylon fibre. Realising that they needed the experience of a specialized textile firm, ICI formed a partnership with Courtaulds, who were leading suppliers of viscose rayon. In January 1940 they registered British Nylon Spinners as a limited company with a nominal capital of £300,000 and took equal shares in the company. The product was badly needed to make parachutes, especially after Japan's entry into the war in December 1941 blocked supplies of silk. In March 1945 it was announced that they had purchased a site in South Wales.

    The factory was built between 1945 and 1948; it was designed by Sir Percy Thomas and Son and is the major production unit on a formally planned and landscaped industrial complex. The historical context for this development lies in the catastrophic decline of the traditional south Wales industries between the wars, and growing recognition that the national interest would best be served by a balanced distribution of diversified industry.

    The factory was originally the source of all nylon yarn produced in Britain and employed some 5,000 people. Construction began in 1945, with Sir Robert McAlpine and Sons Ltd as general contractors; production began in 1948. There was some expansion thereafter, not only to the main plant itself, but also in associated buildings on the site; these included a doctors' surgery, a building devoted to testing and developing the products to support their successful use by customers, an administration block and a Research and Development block. Around 1960 a clubhouse was built across the road with a huge ballroom, as well as a rifle range, judo lessons, a restaurant and bars. BNS ceased to exist in 1964, when ICI purchased Courtaulds' stake after a failed takeover attempt of Courtaulds proper. At some point it came under the control of DuPont, and latterly seems to have been managed by a company called Terram (albeit the works were used in a much reduced capacity).

    The Explore

    I visited this with @Jonesy after a tip off from @clebby over lunch after an interesting morning in the local area involving an asylum and some over anxious security guards….

    We made our way in to the back of the site into what appeared to be a fairly busy trading estate. Even though it was the weekend a fair amount of people still seemed to be there.

    We quickly made our way inside and started exploring, heading straight for the spinning tower and the huge tanks we could see through the windows. They didn’t fail in being of interest and we were soon wandering amongst them and taking pics.

    We climbed up the gantry to have a better look at the vats and to have butchers out of the windows at the roof top that awaited us.

    Although we failed to see the offices due to the constant reminder of people on the site we did get to have a good rummage through the various stores on the roof tops and found some interesting machinery.




































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    Thanks given by: andylen, ExplorerX, Hugh Jorgan, krela, Mearing, oldscrote, prettyvacant71, psykie, Rubex, smiler, thorfrun

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    April 2012
    Location
    braintree
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    Great to see the place again it's been quiet too long, not been yet so thanks for reminding me!

    Crackin first shot, caught some lovely light...and a sun burst The blue steps looked a bit of a tricky shot, well it wuda been for me!

    Cheers dude enjoyed that!
    ...

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  4. #3
    Join Date
    February 2016
    Location
    Llanelli
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    50
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    Default


    Nice work there lads, love a bit of industrial porn.

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  5. #4
    Join Date
    September 2009
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    Oxford
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    One of those places I keep putting on the back burner but one day I'll get done. At least there's no danger of it suddenly disappearing any time soon.
    My Flickr

    Pseudomerican

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  6. #5
    Join Date
    February 2015
    Location
    Aberdeen, Scotland
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    Nicely done. You took advantage of the nice weather and got some cracking shots.
    When the going gets tough - the tough get going.

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  7. #6
    Join Date
    October 2010
    Location
    Lost in Cornwall
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    Nicely done MR, Liked it, Thanks
    Smiler
    😁

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