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The Hick Hargreaves Engine

The oldest engine in our collection, the Hick Hargreaves, was built by the famous firm of engine builders in Bolton, Lancashire.

The engine is of particular interest to steam enthusiasts since it has one of the earliest types of the then revolutionary valve gear invented by the American engineer, George Corliss.

Its long working life was spent powering a lace factory on Newdigate Street in Nottingham.


After it was shut down in 1940, the engine was left abandoned in its basement engine room.

It was donated to Forncett Industrial Steam Museum in 1980.

The engine was rebuilt at Forncett and, the first time that we applied steam, it sprang into life.

This says much for the soundness of Victorian engineering.

DONATED BY Kontac Ltd. of Grantham and Jane D. Knitwear of Nottingham.

TYPE Hick Hargreaves Single Cylinder Corliss Engine. 50 HP. Engine No. 303.

BUILDER Hick Hargreaves and Co., Bolton. 1873.

CYLINDER 13 inch and 36 inch Stroke.

VALVES Corliss with Inglis and Spencer Trip Gear.


FLYWHEEL 10 foot diameter. Cast in two halves. Weight 10 tons.


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