Avon Steel Works

Illus: Extract from the Ordnance Survey Map of 1863 (National Library of Scotland).

Sites & Monuments Record

Hill, MuiravonsideSMR 869NS 945 730


1841: By 1841 there was a spade forge on the River Avon at Hill Farm.  It was powered by water and seems to have been funded by the landowner, John Calder. The tenants in 1841 were the Moore family, four of whom were listed as blacksmiths.

1851: By 1851 the tenants were the Kyne and Stone families.  The latter included James Stone whose occupation was given as “steel refiner”.  At the same time a William Hawksworth was resident nearby at Compston.  He was a “steel core maker and refiner”.  Both Stone and Hawksworth were from England and had been in the area for at least four years.  Hawksworth rented the steel works from 1855 to 1863 for a yearly charge of £35, including workers’ houses.

Illus: Bridge over the Lade at the Avon Steel Mill.

1866: James Prentice & Co, tenant.

1867: Stones & Robertson, tenant.

1874: In February the Coatbridge Tinplate Co leased the steel work.  Products included pick-axes, sledge hammers, steel wedges, etc.

1880s: John Calder, proprietor, Charles Walter Robinson tenant.

1890: John Calder died and the works lay empty.  Robinson set up the Forth Bridge Steel Works (sometimes referred to as the Polmont Steel Works) at Polmont Station.

G.B. Bailey, 2021