- Jun 7, 2014
- Reaction score
Been a bit of talk on here lately so thought I would clarify from a visit last week.
It is most definitely still accessible though Fri afternoon as we did is not the best time as its by no means discreet. made more difficult by cars pouring out of the neighbouring Balfour site which now dominates the land behind here.
As someone recently mentioned this is not what I would call a "shadow" factory as its not actually underground but rather has a labyrinth of basements but does have an underground feel once inside.
As he also mentions it stinks! not good at the start of a weekend away as my car stunk of sewery oily mud for the rest of our trip!
I dont actually think much has changed from old reports here & though there is not much there I did find it an interesting place. Im not sure what the planning is here but pretty certain it will be swallowed up or demolished by the development before long>
The history I stolen but as everyone prev seems to of done I guess thats Ok
In 1854 J. S. Nettlefold, a Birmingham screw manufacturer, had revolutionized his industry by introducing automated American machinery. Room was needed to house this; Nettlefold, joined by his brother-in-law Joseph Chamberlain, father of the statesman, established the Heath Street Works in Cranford Street, Smethwick. The firm dominated the market by the mid 1860s. In 1880, the year in which it became a limited company, Nettlefolds took over one of its local rivals, the Birmingham Screw Co. The newly acquired works was almost as large as the Heath Street Works and faced it from the opposite bank of the Birmingham Canal.
The above ground stuff is nothing exceptional.
By the outbreak of the First World War the new company produced over half the screws and about a quarter of the nuts and bolts made in the country. In the late 1960s the headquarters of Guest, Keen & Nettlefolds Ltd., by then an investment company, adjoined the Heath Street Works, a 50-acre complex run by GKN Screws and Fasteners Ltd. and employing some 4,500 people.
View over road bridge to the still live side
Looking down one of the old stairwells
Back down we go to some great old rooms / workshops
A strange catladder affair brings you back up to this trashed ground level room
No idea what this stuff is but Im sure its not good for u!
Thats all from here!