Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 148,135 pages of information and 233,678 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.


From Graces Guide

Jump to: navigation, search
April 1935.
May 1935.
Sept 1940.
1943. Ref AA below
November 1944.
November 1946.
July 1954.
1959. Map of the planned Swansea works at Foundation Ceremony.

Makers of commercial and domestic refrigeration equipment, of Birmingham, Theale, Fareham and Glasgow

1935 Pressed Steel Co was making Prestcold refrigerators (see advert)

1936 Private company formed as Refrigeration (Birmingham) Ltd to manufacture refrigerators; owned by Pressed Steel Co.

1959 Name changed.

1961 Refrigeration and air conditioning engineers. 100 employees.

1961 Company opened a new factory at Crymlyn Burrows, Swansea.

1963 Pressed Steel formed a commercial refrigeration division: Pressed Steel Commercial Refrigeration[1]

1968 Prestcold Ltd, a subsidiary of British Leyland Motor Corporation bid for L. Sterne and Co in order to expand the refrigeration business which Leyland regarded as "developing" and sharing mass production techniques. This would double the size of the company[2]

1970 Prestcold Sterne sold its heavy industrial refrigeration contracting division, including the Lodge Lane, Derby facility, to Hall Thermotank International[3]

1975 Acquired Gardiner Refrigeration and Air Conditioning[4]

1976 Acquired Searle Manufacturing from Hall-Thermotank[5]. Capacity to supply more than half of the British market for heat exchangers.

1981 David Abell, MD of BL Commercial Vehicles division, resigned from the company to devote his time to his interests in Suter Electrical which was negotiating with Leyland Vehicles for the purchase of Prestcold which it had been trying to sell for 2 years[6]. Purchase completed after Suter raised money through a rights issue. Business reorganised into 4 autonomous unit[7].

1984 Suter sold Prestcold's SHUD division and 2 distribution subsidiaries to Copeland Corp of USA, which had acquired an option to buy 10% of Suter Electrical; Suter gained distribution rights to Copeland equipment[8].

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. The Times, Jul 26, 1963
  2. The Times, Sep 10, 1968
  3. The Times, Aug 26, 1970
  4. The Times, May 29, 1976
  5. The Times, May 14, 1976
  6. The Times, 17 January 1981
  7. The Times, 6 October 1981
  8. The Times, 17 February 1984