Benson's History

The reason for putting this information together is to record some of the history and life of my Grandfather and his son, my uncle, who worked / part owned the William Benson factory after Henry William Benson died in 1927. The Benson family tree, as I know.
The company was formed by William Benson (b~1824) and after his death, his son Henry William Benson took over. On the death of Henry William Benson, in 1927, the factory was sold to three of the employes, who had an equal share in the company. My grandfather, Charles William Rawlinson, was one of the three. On his death in 1961, his share was passed onto his son, Charles H Rawlinson.

This  is all information was saved when the engineering works was closed in 1963.
The items shown above come from old catalogues that where saved.
The contents of the factory was sold as scrap and the documentation was lost.
The works which employed a large number of people in its better years was reduced down to about 3 in the last year.
One of  the main reasons for the closure was the redevelopment of this area of Nottingham called St. Ann's, a area of old run down housing and factories.
The site where Robin Hood Works was is now a new housing estate on a different road layout. The nearest roads are Salford Gardens & Plantagenet Court, NG3.

Below is a plan of the factory in about 1950’s. As remembered by my uncle Charles in his later years and what I can remember as a young lad, visiting the factory.
The machinery was almost all powered by a very large DC motor, (fed from the power station nearby that supplied power for the Nottingham tram system). Most lathes and machinery powered by the overhead system of pulleys and leather belts.
In the last few years this was replaced by a modern 3 phase 440V motor.
In the yard was a stone bed which was the site of the original steam engine that powered the factory.
I seem to remember more lathes and machinery than shown, but I was a young teenager and every thing looked large !
Above the Fitting Shop area was a room with a number of small lathes.
There was also a number of rooms above the offices on the front, including the drawing office.

 

Factory Plan
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