Fettling Home

Group Photos Browse our collection of portraits of the workers

Gallery Images from the foundry

Poet's Corner A selection of poems by former employees

Timeline A guided tour through the history of the foundry


The Project

The project was born during the consultations that led to the decision to close the foundry. The original idea was to produce a commemorative booklet that could be presented to the workforce. Ray Jones the senior shop steward for Amicus had seen a copy of 'Heavy Metal' by photographer and writer Ian Beesley – a modest publication documenting the recent closure of Kirkstall Forge in Leeds. Ray contacted Ian to discuss the possibility of doing something similar at the Clarence Road foundry in Hunslet, Leeds.

Ian had just joined Heads Together Productions as a creative projects officer. The idea was put to the rest of the team at Heads and it was decided that there was the opportunity to develop an ambitious project that could engage the work force in a creative process of documenting and interpreting their experiences and aspirations. The end result was to produce something more substantial and valued than a booklet. Heads Together's development director, Linda Strudwick, was able to access a substantial grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund. Amicus the union and Hydro the company also contributed to the budget.

The enormous amount of work produced has been edited to produce a 148 page book, a large touring exhibition, a DVD, an education pack for schools and this website. A selection of this work along with old photographs, documents and maps has been catalogued and presented to Leeds City archives as an historical record of the foundry.

All this work would not have been possible without the involvement of the following artists:

From Heads Together: Adrian Sinclair, who shot the films and edited the book. Katy Haley who designed the exhibition and Abi May who drew and sketched the foundry.

From the freelance world: Andy Edwards, Justin Brooke, and Emily Chicken, who designed the book. Kyp who shot and edited the films and Joe Gilmore of Qubik Design, who designed this website. Also, Dr Gary Firth who researched and wrote the historical section of the book.

The project will not end when the foundry finally closes in March 2005. This website will continue that work. Please send us (Heads Together Productions) any material written or visual relating to the history of West Yorkshire Foundries.

heads together logo - together with purpose

logos: arts and business, heritage lottery fund, hydro, amicus

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