Late last year we accompanied some clients on a visit to B.B Stanley of Walsall, one of the oldest foundries in the country.
Established in 1832, B.B Stanley is one of only a handful of companies carrying on traditional production of high-quality buckles, lorinery and other brassware items. The nearby Jabez Cliff & Co (aka Barnsby) produces world class leather saddles.
Walsall (situated in the West Midlands) has a history of mining and metal production dating back to the medieval period due to plentiful raw materials available including coal, iron and limestone deposits. Consequently it is home to numerous small workshops and factories producing a variety of items from locks and bolts to rails, buckles and tools.
B.B Stanley still produces using an ancient sand casting method – pouring molten metal in to a sand mould – a process over two millennia old.
During our visit we took some photos of the foundry, its workers and their processes, which we share with you here.