On this day – 10th January

On this day in 1709 Abraham Darby used his furnace at Coalbrookdale for the first time.

Painting by Philip James De Loutherbourg, “Coalbrookdale by Night,” 1801 .

Abraham Darby I (14 April 1678 – 8 March 1717) was the first and best known of several men of that name. Born into an English Quaker family that played an important role in the Industrial Revolution, Darby developed a method of producing pig iron in a blast furnace fuelled by coke rather than charcoal. This was a major step forward in the production of iron as a raw material for the Industrial Revolution.

Although not wholly responsible for the Industrial Revolution, Darby is of extraordinary significance in the development in English history, and in the development of this region as a centre of industrial production.  The industrial process’ that Darby employed were not new; it grew from established traditions that he utilised to make metal pots.  Darby’s innovation to use coke instead of charcoal to produce pig iron resulted in a more advanced production process of all iron goods.

Coalbrookdale Cast Iron Cooking Pots from “Coalbrookdale Company Catalogue 1875”.

It was left to Darby’s grandson, Abraham Darby III (1750–1791), to build the first great architecturally scaled monument to his grandfather’s innovation, the great iron bridge at Coalbrookdale of 1778.

The first major bridge in the world to be made of cast iron. Construction begun in November 1777 and it still stands today as a crossing for the River Severn in Shropshire. Image credit: Wikipedia

If you think about it long enough, it’s hard to be lukewarm about the Industrial Revolution.  Either way you go… was it the best thing to happen to mankind? Or was that the beginning of all degradation? The Darby family was at its centre, to praise as heroes or blame as villains?

Extending thank-you’s to Clio, who’s Calendar Blog has inspired and provided much of the information used in today’s post.


Whats On?

January 2019
11th Best Site Practices for Making, Using and Curing Lime Mortars:
Charlestown Workshops, Fife
15th Mortars, Plasters and Renders 2:
The Engine Shed, Forthside Way, Stirling
16th Empowering Design Parctices Study Tour – Faith, Community and Design:
Mossley Hill Church, Liverpool
18th Timber Buildings in Essex:
Cressing Temple Barns, Essex
18th Conservation Plans:
Birmingham City University
19th Lime Pointing:
Merryhill Training Centre, Fife
25th Lime Based Mortars and Traditional Materials for Repair of Civil Engineering Structures:
Merryhill Training Centre, Fife
25th-26th Project Management and Urban Design:
Birmingham City University
28th-31st Specifying Conservation Works:
West Dean College, West Sussex
29th-30th Rubble Wall Building:
Merryhill Training Centre, Fife

Thanks to Building Conservation for proving us with these Key Dates and Events not to be missed in January.

The services we provide for you at

aura conservation


Roof Tiling, Steeplejacks and Lightning Protection, Roof Drainage, Lead Protection, Roof Features.


Stone, Brick, Cast Stone, Terracotta, Sculpture, Statuary, Bronze Statuary.


Painting & Decorating, Plasterwork, Tiling, Timber Flooring.

Services & Treatment

Protection and Remedial Treatment, Paint Finishes, Mortars & Renders, Pointing, Paint Removal, Masonry Cleaning, Structural Repairs, Epoxy Resin Repairs.

Metal, Wood & Glass

Fine Joinery, Wood Carving, Windows and Doors, Secondary Glazing, Metalwork.

Incorporated in 2006, Aura Conservation have existed for over twelve successful years. We have a sound and experienced management team. We can assist you in any of your conservation needs and have a body of long standing and experienced tradesmen we can call on with specialist knowledge of the conservation world. Along with prudent financial management, we have a sound financial foundation that will see us prosper in the coming years.

You can contact us at:

Dunham House, 181 Wellington Road North, Stockport, Cheshire, SK4 2PB. Tel. 0161 442 9850 Fax. 0161 432 8478

Email  enquiries@auraltd.co.uk
Web    www.auraltd.co.uk


One Reply to “On this day – 10th January”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: