Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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London Electric Wire Co and Smiths

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Dec 1921.
1959. Golden Jubilee Booklet.

of Anaconda Works, Salford, and Church Road, Leyton (1919)

of Church Road, Leyton, London, E10. Telephone: Leytonstone 3636. Telegraphic Address: "Lewcos, London"; and 24 Queen Anne's Gate, Westminster, London, SW1. (1937). Also at Tenax Road, Trafford Park, Manchester[1]

1909 Merger of London Electric Wire Co with the Salford business of Frederick Smith and Co, wire manufacturers, to form the London Electric Wire Co and Smiths Ltd[2]

1909 Public company.

1914 Copper wire drawers, dynamo and instrumental wire coverers and cable makers. [3]

1919 Issue of preference shares[4]

1920 Acquired land at Trafford Park, Manchester[5]

By 1921 the company manufactured electric cables, wire, and flex; it employed 1,306 workers.

1927 Two of the company's senior managers were appointed to the board of Industrial Paint and Standard Varnish Co as representatives of a large user of varnish[6]

1929 Patent - Improvements in or relating to electrical inductances. [7]

1932 Patent - Improvements in or relating to sleeving for electric conductors. [8]

At some point acquired Vactite Wire Co

1937 Advert in British Industries Fair Catalogue as Maker of C. M. A. (Cable Makers' Association) Cables. Manufacturers of Electric Wires and Cables for all purposes. (Electricity: Industrial and Domestic Section - Stand Nos. Cb.501 and Cb.400)

1937 Listed Exhibitor - British Industries Fair. Insulated Wires and Strips for every electrical purpose. Cotton, Silk, Enamel, Paper and Asbestos Insulations. Copper Braids and Cords. Telephone Cords. Bell Wires. Resistance Wires. Compressed Strands. Laminated Strips, etc. (Stand No. Cb.610) [9]

1937 Insulated electric conductors. "Lewcos" Insulated Wire and Strips. [10]

WWII Manufactured degaussing strips, wires for heating airmen's flying suits, as well as wires for aircraft and communications[11]

By 1957 the 4 companies were marketing their products in a coordinated fashion: London Electric Wire Co and Smiths, Frederick Smith and Co, Liverpool Electric Cable Co, Vactite Wire Co (see advert)

1958 Acquired a controlling interest in the private Millett, Levens Group which included Printed Circuits, and Millett Levens (Engravers), of Borehamwood[12]

1959 Acquired by AEI but treated as a "supply company" rather than a division[13].

1960s It was the largest employer of labour in Leyton, and the largest manufacturer of insulated wire in Europe.

1961 Manufacturers of insulated wires and strips for wiring of electrical and wireless apparatus of all descriptions. 3,000 employees. [14]

1966 Factories were being modernized[15]. NB this seems to have been separate from the Cables Group

1975 Part of GEC; including Kent Brothers Electric Wire Co and E. H. Phillips Ltd and F. D. Sims Ltd

See Also

  • [3] British History Online - Leyton

Sources of Information

  1. 'Trafford Park - The First Hundred Years' by Robert Nicholls. Phillimore & Co Ltd., 1996
  2. The Times, Dec 09, 1919
  3. 1914 Whitakers Red Book
  4. The Times, Dec 09, 1919
  5. The Times, Oct 29, 1920
  6. The Times, Mar 15, 1927
  7. [1] Wikipatents
  8. [2] Wikipatents
  9. 1937 British Industries Fair Advert p564; and p384
  10. 1937 The Aeroplane Directory of the Aviation and Allied Industries
  11. The Times, Jun 15, 1945
  12. The Times, Nov 05, 1958
  13. The Times, 22 April 1960
  14. 1961 Dun and Bradstreet KBE
  15. The Times, March 10, 1966