This website requires a browser which supports HTML5.
Some elements of this site will not work correctly until you upgrade your browser.
PocketHistoriesofRedditch-Springs
DesignedandProducedbyAnthonyGreen2015
ABriefIntroductiontotheSpringIndustryinRedditch
PocketHistoriesofRedditch-Springs
DesignedandProducedbyAnthonyGreen2015
Verysimple,non-coilspringshavebeenusedthroughouthistorybutcoiledspringswerenotreallydevelopeduntiltheearlyfifteenthcentury.Theywereusedtoreplacethesystemofweightsusedtopowerclockswithawoundspringmechanism.In1676RobertHookediscoveredtheprinciplebehindsprings'action,thattheforceitexertsisproportionaltoitsextension,nowcalledHooke'slaw.Mass-productiontechniquesformakingspringsbeganintheeighteenthcenturyduringtheIndustrialRevolutionandspringstodayareusedinaverylargerangeofdevicesbutareveryrarelynoticedunlesstheyfail.
Above:SirRobertHooke(1635-1703)
Below:SpringdesignedbyLeonardideVinci
EarlyMechanicalSpringDevelopment
PocketHistoriesofRedditch-Springs
DesignedandProducedbyAnthonyGreen2015
ThemanufactureofspringsinRedditchwasbuiltontheexperienceofsteelwirehandlingfromtheneedleandfish-hooktrade.AnumberofdifferentmanufacturersbeganbutthelargestofthesewasHerbertTerry&SonsLtd.HerbertTerrystartedthecompanyin1855andbeganbymakingartificialbaitbutsoonexpandedintoclipsandmetalfittings,followedbypressingsandsprings.HerbertTerryretiredin1902andhandedoverhiscompanytohissons,whocontinuedthecompanyexpansion.Additionalpremiseswerebuiltandacquiredandbythe1920'sthefirmwasknownthroughouttheworld.
Left:Terry’sSpringsRangephotoAG,courtesyofForgeMillNeedleMuseum
HerbertTerryandSonsLtd
PocketHistoriesofRedditch-Springs
DesignedandProducedbyAnthonyGreen2015
TheAnglepoiselampwasdesignedbyGeorgeCarwardine(1887-1948),anengineerwhoenjoyeddevelopingdifferenttypesofsprings.Hedesignedanewspringwhichcouldbemovedeasilyineverydirectionyetcouldalsoremainrigidwhenheldinposition.Patentedin1932,hefoundausewithalampwhich,supportedandbalancedbyasequenceofsprings,couldbeconstantlyrepositionedtofocusthelightinspecificdirections.ItwasmanufacturedbyTerry's,ofRedditch,from1934untiltheyceasedmanufactureinRedditchin2001.TheAnglepoiselampisstillmanufacturedtoday,butnotinRedditchbut,Ibelieve,inChina!
Left:EarlyadvertisementfortheAnglepoiselampRight:PhotographofmyAnglepoiseLamp(photoAG)
TheAnglepoiseLamp
PocketHistoriesofRedditch-Springs
DesignedandProducedbyAnthonyGreen2015
Bythe1950'sHerbertTerryandSonsweremakingawiderangeofsprings,pressworkandwirework.TherangewasusedwidelyintheBritishmotorcar,motorcycleandbicycleindustriesInthenineteen-sixtiesthefirm'sproductionstartedtostagnateduetoforeigncompetitionandlackofinvestment.InSeptember1971thecompanywastakenoverbyanAmericanEngineeringGroup(Barnes)buttheRedditchfirm,wasabletokeepitsname.ThecompanycontinuedunderthedaytodaymanagementoftheTerryfamilyuntil1975whentheirinvolvementceased.Inthesameyeartherightstothewell-known"Anglepoise"desklampweresoldtotheTerryfamily.
LeftandRight:Terry’sSpringsPackagesphotosAG,courtesyofForgeMillNeedleMuseum
TheDeclineofTerry’s
PocketHistoriesofRedditch-Springs
DesignedandProducedbyAnthonyGreen2015
Duringthe1970'sand1980'sHerbertTerryandSonssteadilydeclineduntil,inthe1990's,itfinallycloseddown.TheonlyoneoftheoriginalfactorybuildingsstillexistingisMillsboroughHouse,whichnowhousenumeroussmallbusinesses.However,forspecialistapplications,acorrectlydesignedspringisrequired.Forthisreason,springmakinghasnotbeentotallyoverwhelmedbycheapimportsandasearchofanon-linedirectorygives38resultsforspringcompaniesinRedditch.So,Redditch,althoughithaslostanumberofimportantspringcompanies,stillmaintainsahealthyrangeofmanufacturers.
Left:HeathSpringsin1970(photofromcollectionAG)Right:MillsboroughHousein2010(photoAG)
SpringManufactureToday
PocketHistoriesofRedditch-Springs
DesignedandProducedbyAnthonyGreen2015
EndofPresentation
ABriefIntroductiontotheSpringIndustryinRedditch