Gas Works
Hayfield Gas Co

 In 1836 The New Mills and Hayfield Gas Company was established by Act of Parliament, but its right to supply Hayfield lapsed.

 Map showing site of Gas Works
Map circa 1915

Then in 1858 the Hayfield Gas Co was formed it supplied gas for street lighting in the village as well as for domestic and industrial use.

Gas 'Flare Burner'
Flare burner

Just after the First World War in the works were modernised and the Incandescent burner (Gas Mantle) came in to use. The use of a Mantle gave more light and was cleaner than the 'Flare' burners they replaced, resulting in an increased demand for domestic gas, so a third Gas holder was erected to meet the demand.

Flare Burner and reflector
Double Flare with reflector

 First Gas Lamp outside Church
The first Street Gas Lamp in Hayfield
was lighted on 27th January 1859

Until then the only practical forms of domestic lighting were Candles and Oil Lamps and of course day light, you were up at day break and in by sunset no TV or Radio!
Cooking was on a fire range no gas or electric cookers

oil Lamp
Oil Lamp

The industrial use of gas was limited as most of the print works were making their own gas.

 Flare Burner with pilot light
Flare Burner with pilot light

One must remember in those days Gas, Town Gas or Coal Gas to give it its correct name was produced from Coal not from a bore hole in the North Sea as it is today.

Gas was produced by 'cooking' coal in a airtight container, producing Gas, Tar and Coke. The Coke, which was mainly carbon was used as a fuel for the cooking process as was some of the tarry residue but this gave off rather noxious fumes.
The gas produced by this method was full of impurities and had to be cleaned before it could be used for lighting.
It was cooled to condense out impurities and scrubbed by bubbling through water only then was it stored in Gas holders ready for distribution.

 Gas Mantle
Experimental Incandescent Burner
(Gas Mantle) Circa 1886
This gas had a very distinctive smell unlike North Sea gas which is odourless and has to have a smelly component added for safety reasons

Hayfield Gas Works closed in the 1950s
Even the lane 'Gas House Lane' has been renamed 'Ridge Top Lane'
Hayfield Gas Company Advert


(c) Please respect the generosity and rights of the people who have contributed to this site Copyright, All Rights Reserved, no material is to be copied or used for any purposes without first obtaining their permission via