Washington Chemical Works
Client: Sunderland City Council
Archaeo-Environment were comissioned by Sunderland City Council to undertake a Desk Based Assessment on the former Washington Chemical Works. The development proposal was found to impact on the remains of the works, a potential nationally important monument.
Hugh Lee Pattinson founded the chemical works in the late 1830s or early 1840s. The works were the site of a number of innovative techniques used to advance the chemical industry in the 19th century. The works started as a lead, silver and paint manufactory before moving into magnesia and alkali production. It subsequently moved into the production of insulation materials and converted the Wire Rope Works, which had been incorporated into the site, into a Cork Plant. In time, asbestos became the main insulating material used and this continued until recent times.
A large part of the proposed development area has been reclaimed and offered no constraints to future development. However a number of zones were identified where archaeological remains might survive and appropriate mitigation was recommended in each case.
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