Industrial record MCC5014 - Wallis and Coleman Iron Foundry, 147-155 High Street, Colchester


(Site of) Late 18th century foundry. Site redeveloped in 1930/1940s.


Grid reference Centred TL 9949 2525 (43m by 89m)
Map sheet TL92NE


Type and Period (1)

Full Description

The foundry has been demolished and the site re-developed by Williams and Griffin (Fenwick). This was the site of the earliest iron foundry in Essex, built by Joseph Wallis in c.1792, on land owned by the Winnock Charity. An 1803 plan and elevation of the foundry survives, illustrating a single storey gable-roofed building with central cupola, in a complex which included a counting house, shed and warehouse, built at Wallis’ own expense. For many years, Wallis and from 1828, Wallis and Coleman, were the major ironmongers in Colchester and the business prospered and expanded, despite Coleman’s departure in 1848 (to the Coleman and Morton foundry in Chelmsford) and the death of Wallis shortly after. Principally producing agricultural implements and machinery, but later steam engines and boilers, the firm passed into the hands of Catchpool and Thompson, Catchpool and Stanford’s and ultimately as Stanfords the engineering firm until the 1920’s, when trading ceased. It is uncertain when the foundry was demolished, but the redevelopment is c.1930-40’s in date.<1>

Deposits associated with the iron foundary were defined during an archaeological evaluation in 2011 (ECC2989) and in subsequent excavations in 2014 (ECC4088).<2><3>

Sources/Archives (3)

  • <1> Unpublished document: Garwood, Adam. 1997. Iron Foundries in Essex.
  • <2> Evaluation Report: Wightman, Adam (CAT). 2011. Report on an archaeological evaluation by test-pitting at Williams & Griffin, 147-155 High Street, Colchester, Essex. CAT Report 622.
  • <3> EXCAV REPORT: Wightman, Adam and Crummy, Philip. 2017. DRAFT An archaeological excavation and watching brief at Fenwick Colchester (formerly Williams & Griffin), 147-151 High Street, Colchester, Essex. CAT Report 1150.

Finds (0)

Protected Status/Designation

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (2)

Record last edited

Oct 2 2017 11:33AM

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