Springfield Foundry

Vulcan Foundry
Springfield Foundry1876-1899
Diamond Foundry1899-1907
Diamond Steel Works1908-1924
M. Cockburn & Co.1876-1899
Davis Gas Co. Ltd.               1899-1907
Wm. Pender & Co.               1907-1918
Falkirk Diamond Steel Co Ltd1918-1924
Illus: Ordnance Survey Map 1898 (National Library of Scotland).

Sites & Monuments Record

McFarlane Crescent, Grahamston  SMR 710NS 889 803


1876:  Second foundry built by Cockburn (Gowanbank), beside the goods yard at Grahamston.  According to Gillespie it was first called the “Vulcan Foundry (Gillespie, R 1879, p.40).  The site had been a manure depot and covered some 3 acres with the water supply coming from a 150ft deep well supplemented by the town supply during the summer.  It was managed by his son, Malcolm Cockburn, and became known as Young Malcolm’s.  Most of their castings were for the Davis Gas Stove Co of London, and W Davis provided financial backing along with several other London merchants.  Doctors Moffat and Hamilton objected to the site on health grounds, but to no avail.

1884: Tramway laid throughout the works.  Further labour saving devices included a steam hoist with a vertical piston by Donald & Crawford of Grangemouth.  Emery wheels replaced hand filing.  An average of 10 tons of castings were made each day.  These included such items as lamp stands, drain covers, gas grates, railings, kitcheners known as the “Scottish Chief“, “Hamilton” and “Jewel“.  In 1885 a new moulding shop measuring 250ft by 48ft was added.

1894: Mitchell Alexander, foreman moulder, left for Leeds.

1895: Moulding shop extended due to the demand for gas stoves.

1899: After a serious fire,  and because they were not insured, the works were sold  in 1900 to  the Davis Gas Co Ltd of London, who had been intending to erect a foundry in the Falkirk area anyway.  They renamed the works the Diamond Foundry after one of their best selling stoves.   Harold N Davis was a director and acted as general manager.  John Prentice was the works manager.  The first cast by the new owners was in July 1900.

1900-1907:  In 1900 a new pattern shop measuring 145 x 70ft was built.  In 1901 a fitting shop 190 x 70 ft was added.  Further additions in this period included warehouses, a sand mill, loading bank and new offices.  An internal rail system using hand pushed trucks was introduced.  New machinery led to some automation.  JP Goodsir was the architect.

1907, June: Transferred production to new foundry in Luton.

1914: William Pender & Co Ltd took over the business of William Pender (steel manufacturer), George Sinclair (steel smelter) and James John Easton Wilson, all steel manufacturers at the Diamond Steel Works, Grahamston Station, under the firm name of William Pender & Co.  Capital set at 3,000 £1 shares, with William Pender, George Sinclair, George Walker (undertaker) and William Roberts (sculptor) as directors.

1918: William Pender removed from the office of director by an extraordinary resolution.  His shares transferred to James Farquharson and the company name changed to the Falkirk Diamond Steel Company Ltd.

1920: Capital increased to £10,000.  In 1924 this was reduced to £4,000.  Shortly thereafter the company went into liquidation.


  • 1879: 20
  • 1885: 150
  • 1901: 100

G.B. Bailey, 2021