Friday, 14 November 2008

Grotton Brickworks

These are what’s left of the original coal fired kilns in Grotton in Saddleworth, before there was a civilized housing estate built just to the side.
These kilns were used to fire clay pots and bricks. When I was a child and lived in Grotton. I would occasionally sneak into the Brickworks to see what went on. The kilns then were domed, like an igloo. And though the doors into the kilns could be seen shimmering heat and glowing orange pots and bricks being fired. It was a very scary place, like Dante’s inferno, I always imagined.


  1. Very Cool. I always wish they would keep things like this around for future generations. We should always remember how things "use" to be done.

  2. We still own the brickworks but sadly no bricks as you remember them just 3", 4", 6" and 12" land drains the bricks part of the kiln floor. The bricks many years before. Was a spectacular site with heat.
    Great photo and write up. The little park is part of the agreement re building.

  3. Where did the factory move to Nick?

  4. Hi again. Sad to say the factory closed as new residents in area started complaining re Sulpher smell as kilns opened in a morning and plastic drains became popular (not as good). My uncle tried to give the land away as a park but neither Oldham or Tameside showed any interest. He then tried to convert the old farm into three houses but got knocked back. SO sold some of the land to a developer and got a lot of abuse for doing so.
    As a kid in 60s/70s I used to dynamite the quarry face with the foreman "Jack" well known in area was great fun. I would have kept a kiln but not in my control at the time. H&S forced the issue as I recall. Have an old aerial pic of the old site if interested. Best wishes Nick

  5. Yea, I’d love to see the aerial pic. If you can email it to me Nick I’ll add it to this post.

  6. Hi All
    my name is Phil and i live in mossley with my partner Jan & we are currently researching our local history

    we live less than a mile from grotton brick works and have often wondered about it and how important it was to the local economy when in production.

    can any one tell me when Grotton brick works actually closed & was subsequently demolished

    the general consensus on the internet seems to suggest 1984 ?
    but my partner & her brother in law think it was the late 1970s

    Also i would like to know if the bricks had the company name in the frog of the brick
    if so what was it ?
    i collect named bricks and have glossop / Accrington nori etc and lots of others from miles around.

    i have had a quick search on and around the brick works site but failed to find any that were made there
    i found glossops and Accringtons etc :(

    Many thanks in Advance
    Phil kinzett

  7. Hi Phil. Not sure about the exact close date, but I know I was on a scrambler motorbike around this site in 1978, and I think it was already closed by then, but I'm not 100% on whether it was actually fully closed or not. I don't remember the frog on the bricks, but I hope it's true and hope you find one.

  8. Hi Calvers
    Thanks for the info

    i will keep looking

    by the way i was one of Hawkwinds roadie's
    from 2000 to 2001
    A mind blowing experience if you get my drift

  9. I'm off to see Hawkwind 25th Jan in Manchester. Still my fav band!

  10. I lived in Brickyard Cottage in 1944/45. Brickyard manager was Mr Ledbetter. My grandparents had previously lived at Thornlea Farm, a couple of hundred yards down the lane