Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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T. Richardson and Sons

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1848. Exhibit at Beamish Museum.
1870. Marine Engines with Surface Condenser and Hackworth's Valve Gear. Designed by George W. Jaffrey.
1871. Engines of the SS Evora.
June 1898.

Thomas Richardson and Sons of Castle Eden Foundry, Hartlepool, County Durham were builders of locomotives, mining equipment and shipbuilders.

1839 When the partnership of Parkin and Richardson dissolved, Thomas Richardson went back to the family foundry.

1840 First steam locomotives built.

1844 Thomas Richardson briefly returned to shipbuilding, building two vessels in Hartlepool over the next two years, but his main interest from then was building engines.

1847 The business became T. Richardson and Sons.

It was the engines side of the business which was developing when his sons took over the firm upon Thomas' death in 1850.

1851 First marine engine built; during the following ten years the marine engineering branch increased rapidly.

1851 Supplied vertical single-cylinder 300 hp winding engine for South Hetton Colliery.

1855 The name of the related shipbuilding firm was changed to Richardson Brothers.

1857 50 locomotives built by this date but the company now focused on colliery and marine engines.

1857 The shipbuilding business of the Richardson Brothers was forced to close due to money problems. They concentrated on the other business, which was making engines for ships (marine engines).

By 1861 marine engineering had become the chief area of manufacturing

1868 Thomas Richardson (1846-1906) joined the firm.

1868 Description and illustrations of engines for West Indian mail steamer 'Columbian', designed by George W. Jaffrey. [1]

1873(?) One of their employees was Thomas Mudd, a brilliant engineer. He worked for Richardsons for ten years.

1883(?) Mudd went to work for the town's biggest shipbuilding firm, William Gray and Co, where he set up the Central Marine Engine Works. This was a rival engine-building company.

1891 On the death of Thomas Richardson the management of the business devolved on his sons Thomas Richardson and Mr. W. J. Richardson.

1894 Morison's Evaporator. Article and illustration in 'The Engineer'.

1900 Amalgamation of three companies: T. Richardson and Sons of Hartlepool; Sir Christopher Furness, Westgarth and Co of Middlesbrough and William Allan and Co of Scotia Engine works, Sunderland to form the new company Richardsons, Westgarth and Co.

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. [1] Engineering, 17 April 1868
  • [2] Hartlepool Council Web Site
  • The Engineer of 2nd March 1894 p176
  • British Steam Locomotive Builders by James W. Lowe. Published in 1975. ISBN 0-905100-816