Dating back to 1920 the iron foundry on Bonchurch Street in Leicester produced small to medium sized castings until its closure in 2016.
Formed in 1864 when Samuel Russell moved to Leicester from Loughborough, the brass and iron foundry based its head office, engineering and foundry operations on Bath Lane in Leicester. The company later became S. Russell & Sons when his two sons joined the firm in 1881.
As the company expanded, 1920 saw the opening of a further works in Bonchurch Street in the Woodgate area of Leicester. The Bonchurch Street foundry produced medium-sized castings, weighing 30-100kg primarily for the hydraulics and rail industries.
The Bonchurch Street foundry was taken over by Chamberlin & Hill Castings in 2004 and S. Russell & Sons were dissolved the following year. By 2016 demand for the products produced at the foundry had dwindled, and management announced it would be closing by the end of that year.
Starting where the raw materials and scrap metal arrive, the furnaces would melt it all down ready to be poured into moulds
Casting and moulding
This is where the molten metal is cast in moulds
Handling and Blast Cleaning
The next stage of the process is to cool and open up the moulds and then clean up the castings
The core shop is where cores are machined in the process of creating the moulds for casting
Finishing and Dispatch
The building housing the heat treatment, finishing and dispatch facilities was a later addition, one of the last buildings to be built on the site.
As well as the production areas, there were a number of workshops to support the main functions of the factory
Bathhouse and Office Block
The bathhouse was quite an old building, with a few features remaining. Unfortunately nice skylights and features in the offices had been covered by suspended ceilings.