YARD VISIT: IRON BROTHERS - MELTING POINT
Classic Boat|February 2021
We visit a foundry that has been making keels for sailing yachts since the 1960s
NIGEL SHARP

Irons Brothers is located on a long, narrow 5.5-acre site just outside Wadebridge in north Cornwall. There was a factory there in the 19th century producing gunpowder for use in Cornish tin and copper mines before it became a foundry which predominantly made pumps for the Cornish china clay industry. In 1925 the then-proprietor Mr Harris sold the company for £350 to three brothers: Clifford, Eddison and Leonard Irons. They continued to service the china clay industry and during the Second World War produced various items, including tank components, for the war effort.

“At some point there was a bit of a falling out among the brothers,” Mathew Robinson, the current chairman, told me. “Eddison and Leonard left to form another company while Clifford stayed and ran Irons Brothers by himself.” He then passed the company on to his son Henry who retired in 2000. Matthew, who is Henry’s son-in-law and has been with the company 30 years, has run Irons Brothers ever since, along with Henry’s nephew Nigel Nurt who is MD. There are currently 29 employees.

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