The Electric Co.

Sometimes, something comes in unexpectedly that puts a huge smile on your face, just for the sheer rarity value of it – and the email I received a couple of days ago from Mike Blakeway in South Australia did just that.

I’ve been asking for years for more material on Crabtree and other local factories, as I’m sure there’s an untapped and rich seem of material to be found from these great lost local employers – but sadly little has emerged.

I’ve had some good contributions on the Birlec in the last year or so, and previously we’ve mentioned Crabtree, but the material was never expanded upon; but now Mike has sent a picture in that will hopefully jog loads of memories.

I’ll let him explain.

Hello Bob

I read with interest some of your info on Crabtree Brownhills but it seemed to promise more to come?

Perhaps these photos of the circuit breaker assembly area in about 1976 will help you.

Best wishes
Mike
(former Brownhills production manager now living in South Australia)

All I can say is thanks Mike for a wonderful picture – how many mums, grandmas, aunts and sisters worked on those production lines? Whole families passed through Crabtree, a once massive local factory which is very sadly no more.

My huge gratitude for a wonderful addition to our recorded local history – if you have any more Crabtree images, I’d love to share them here!

Crabtree B'hills 1975ish red

Labelled ‘April 1976’, Crabtree production lines were labour intensive and fast paced, requiring nimble fingers and no slacking. Crabtree were a massive local manufacturer, and a world leading name; sadly they sold out some years ago and now products sold under the name are manufactured abroad and shipped in. Image kindly supplied by Mike Blakeway.

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2 Responses to The Electric Co.

  1. Ken Shier says:

    I stumbled on this:

  2. Chris Smith says:

    I remember the circuit breaker production line well. Like Mike I was at one time responsible for managing this and other production lines after Mike. Like a lot of locals I had several relatives who worked at Brownhills and Walsall factories.

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