~ Gallery - Industrial ~
Bellows Manufacturing
Bellows Manufacturing took place as early as 1850 in Upper Gornal, Peter Greathead first established a factory there, Greathead had already established Bellows works in Wolverhampton from 1840.
John Greathead was listed in 1861 census as a bellows maker, living in Pale Piece, Upper gornal
Bellows were extensively used in the 19th Century in the Gornal area for use in the nail workshop forges and also as ventilators for mining, so it is no surprise that there was such demand.
The Greathead factory was twice stricken by fire in the 19th Century which destroyed the manufactory firstly in 1859 and then again in 1866.
See 'Great Fire near Wolverhampton' in the Old News pages.
1918: Gloucester Citizen, 11 September.
A fire resulting in serious damage occured on August 26 at the premises of Mr Ermond Leek, Kent Street, Upper Gornal Sedgley, manufacturer of portable forges and smith's bellows.
When Dudley Fire brigade arrived the roof of the double-storeyed building about 40 yards long had colapsed and the efforts of the firemen were severly hampered by the lack of water, which had been turned off at the main.
Eventually a supply of water was obtained from two cisterns at the rear of adjoining dwellings to reach which the steamer had to be taken down a narrow passage.
The premises was completely gutted.
Edward Leek, Upper Gornal.

Advert from 1880
Edward Leek married Peter Greathead's daughter Julia in 1855, he was also a bellows manufacturer.
It is possible that Edmond Leek took over the Greathead factory in the later part of the 19th Century.
It seems the factory was plagued by fires as another one occurred in 1918 gutting Leeks works.
Edmond Leek & Son was listed as bellows makers in the 1916 trade directory.