Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Darby Furnace Beam

In 1972 the outer lamination of one of the beams to the Darby Furnace was in a poor state of repair and was 'rescued'. It was taken to the then Ancient Monuments Laboratory (AML) of the Department of the Environment (Ministry of Works). The former AML is now the English Heritage Centre for Archaeology, and is situated at Fort Cumberland in Portsmouth.

During a recent clear-out the box containing the beam fragments was discovered. This week Paul went down to collect the remains and repatriate them! Due to their fragile nature a full photographic record was made of all of the bits.

Not a promising start - rather tired packaging full of rust!

...and more rust!

Rather fragmented slice of metal, but is that an 'A' at the end?

and then we have a '...BRAHAM'

and finally a 'DARBY 1777' came out of the box!

The fragments were carefully repacked before being driven 'home' to Ironbridge...

Slightly more modern materials used, and carefully wedged together!

Many thanks to Justine Bayley, Vanessa Fell and the staff at the Centre for Archaeology in Portsmouth.


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