Saving a crane that helped build Bath.


A group of industrial history enthusiasts are hoping the citizens of Bath will get behind the restoration of what is believed to be the oldest crane – made at the city’s famous Stothert and Pitt works – which still survives.


It’s a portable hand crane which was built at the Newark Works around 1864. During its working life it was used to load cut blocks of stone onto railway wagons at Corsham.


The leader of what is a small restoration team is Peter Dunn – who himself is an ex S & P employee.

He is hoping – if the money can be raised – the restored crane might go on permanent display at the new flag-ship Bath Quays office-led development on the old Newark Works site.


I took Peter down to the River Avon – across the water from the old S & P site where construction work is now underway – and asked him  to tell me about this unique old crane.

For further information, or if you want to help with the project – sponsorship or labour – please contact Peter Dunn on 07719911421 or email him on

My thanks to Peter for another couple of images.

The first is a lithograph show a large block-setting crane –  destined for Peterhead – on test in the Newark works.

The wharf wall can be seen below it. Peter told me it is the last stretch of original wharf wall still existing on what was the city’s river quayside.

block setting crane for peterhead

The second photograph shows the wall before work began.

wharf wall.d

My photograph of the same area today shows that several courses of original wharf wall have been removed.


The final picture from today shows the area where one side of the new pedestrian bridge will be anchored. It’s due to be open for use by the end of next year.


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