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Black Country Living Museum - Lench’s Oliver Shop - objects and items - cogs and gears | by ell brown
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Black Country Living Museum - Lench’s Oliver Shop - objects and items - cogs and gears

This is the Black Country Living Museum in Dudley, West Midlands.


The museum was established in 1975, and the first buildings moved here in 1976. Since then a 26 acre site has been developed, with the unique conditions of living and working in the Black Country from the mid 19th century to early 20th century.


It is off Tipton Road in Dudley.


This is Lench’s Oliver Shop


Originally built around 1910 by the 'odd worker' Onan Lowe, the Oliver Shop was subsequently taken over in the 1930s by TW Lench of Blackheath, the major nut and bolt manufacturer, to respond to requests for ‘specials’ from customers.


Here the oliversmiths worked at the ten hearths to forge a variety of small wrought iron items known in the Black Country as ‘oddwork’such as pipe clamps, wall hooks and special bolts.


An underground pipe system fed a blast of air to the ten hearths each with an oliver hammer and a treadle operated forging hammer fitted with a pair of shaped tools which enabled the oliversmith to make a wide variety of fittings.


If none of the tools were suitable for making the order the smith would hand craft a new pair.


Demand for oddwork declined after World War II but three oliversmiths were still working at Lench’s until 1979.


All part of Thomas William Lench Ltd.


Objects and items from outside the Oliver Shop (to the left of it).


Cogs and gears - must have some kind of use for something.

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Taken on August 14, 2011