Smeaton Firebrick Works, Newfarm, Dalkeith, Midlothian.

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Smeaton Firebrick Works, Newfarm, Dalkeith, Midlothian.

In Midlothian, clay of the 100-ft. Raised Beach, said to be locally 100 ft. thick, was dug for many years at Portobello, near Edinburgh, for the manufacture of bricks, tiles, chimney-pots, flower-pots
etc. (Ref. 1864, pp. 83-100; 1910, pp. 335, 349; 1934, pp. 61-71). Similar clay was once worked near Smeaton, 2 miles S. of Musselburgh, where raised beach deposits extend inland
up the valley of the Esk (Ref. 1910, p. 348) Source


1830 – Reference to Smeaton brickworks in Dalkieth producing 276,240 common bricks and 19,054 fire bricks – Source Moses Jenkins.

28/01/1847 – Fife Herald – Robert Kemme gave evidence at the hearing between Methven and the Railways. His evidence is detailed thus:

Jacob Kemme Brick and Tile maker in Granton is the manager of the Duke of Buccleuch’s Tile Works at Smeaton.  He pays £44.10s a year for his clay field and was entitled to make 800,000 bricks and tiles, he used about 2000 yards a year which made the rent about 6d a yard.  The deduction for building would be 4d or 41/2d.

10/01/1850 – Fife Herald – Death – At Fisherrow on 29th, Mr William Ritchie, late of Dalkeith Brick Works (Smeaton?)

Below – 1852 – 1853 – Smeaton brick and tile works. (The works are not marked on the 1893 OS Map)

Below – close up of the works

1852 – 1853 – Smeaton Brick and Tile Works – An extensive manufactory of bricks and tiles on the lands of Smeaton on the property of the Duke of Buccleuch and under the superintendence of Mr H Caddell. (Henry Caddell of Grange and Banton? – click me )

Below – 20/12/1859 – The Scotsman – Smeaton Brick Works, Dalkeith advert.

Below – 14/06/1860 – Southern Reporter – Smeaton brick and tile works – Robert Alexander Agent.

24/10/1861 – Southern Reporter – Robert Alexander, sole agent for the above colliery and for Smeaton Brick and Tile Work. Dalkeith Colliery Office. Selkirk Station, October 1861.

15/11/1861 – The Scotsman – North British Railway – Monktonhall and Ormiston and Dalkeith branches. New railways from North British Railway at or near Monktonhall to farm steading of Smeaton in Inveresk Parish hence to Macmerry and Hardengreen; land for station etc, new capital etc and amendments of Act – Notice is hereby given that application is intended to be made to Parliament in the next session for an Act to authorise the North British Railway  Company to make and maintain the following railways with all proper stations, works and conveniences……..and it is proposed by the said intended Act to take powers to deviate from the line and levels of the proposed railways as laid down upon the plans and sections hereinafter mentioned, and to purchase by agreement the private tramway of the Duke of Buccleuch leading from Dalkeith to Smeaton Brick and Tile Works and to appropriate the site of all or parts thereof for the purposes of the intended undertaking and to purchase by compulsion certain lands in the Parish of Inveresk………

1862 – Alexander Gordon, Smeaton Colliery and Brickwork, Dalkeith.

Below – 12/11/1863 – Southern Reporter – Smeaton drain pipes available. Summer made.

1868 – Alexander Gordon, Manager, Smeaton  Brickwork, Dalkeith

1869 – Smeaton Fire Brick Depot – St Leonards Station. George Baigrie agent

Archaeology Data Service  –  2012 – 2014 -See section 10 for a cracking read on the excavations carried out at the Smeaton brick works and its history. They detail – The brick and tile works are first recorded on an engineer’s plan dating to c 1840 (NAS RHP23122) depicting subterranean splint coal deposits.

The National Records of Scotland apparently have information listed under – GD224/552: Dalkeith (Smeaton) Tile Works, vouchers 1850 – 1867

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