25 thoughts on “Maddox’s Farm Stores, Stockton c1984

  1. Finlaysons Ltd, the chemical supplier that used to be in Nelson Terrace, is mentioned by George Clement and Peter H Rigg as well as others in this thread.

    Although the move to Portrack Grange Road, apparently in the early 1970s, worked for about 40 years, it looks like the company closed down about ten years ago. If I am right a combination of the loss of heavy industry and the way that materials are analysed these days, which doesn’t need so much glassware or chemicals must have done for them. How sad.

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  2. Could you please tell me how this picture came to be labelled Old Fire Station Stockton when it very clearly is not.
    This is Prince Regent Street and shows Maddox’s Mill and Browns Sheet Iron Works although the small entrance to the left of the picture did lead to a yard at the back of West Row Fire Station and in my time there would be a couple of AFC trucks with trailers carrying the Standard Water Pump used during the war parked in there.
    Also in that yard would be the stairs leading up to the rooms used by the dancing school for young ladies.
    To the left and not in the picture was the fire Chiefs House, it was set back slightly and fairly new build or re-build, it looked modern to me who would visit a school friend there from Richard Hind School.
    It is some time since I was down Prince Regent Street although I know part of the Francis Brown building is still there, the rest has gone. Having explored the roof line of Regent Street and West Row in my mad youth, I did realise that the buildings were almost back to back with only a couple of small yards between the two street. By walking from one roof to the next and crossing over we could get from Browns building to Dovecot Street and watch the girls go by. One memory that sticks with me is climbing out of a third floor window and shinning down the drain pipe when being chased by a couple of lads I had played a trick on, carefree youth we did not know danger when we saw it.

    Picture Stockton Team – We’ve taken notice of Frank’s comments on the title and changed it accordingly.

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  3. The fire station was in West Row (now a car park) my uncle was a sub officer there he was called Len Taylor (tiger Taylor) I used to watch them practicing their hook ladder drills on the tower. Much later (1974) I joined the fire service and spent most of my 30 years at Stockton fire station in Norton, and never regretted a minute of it, great times.

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    • So if you had that amount of service Michael at Norton, some of your colleagues would of been Ian Crowle, Ted Strike and Brian Fitzgerald who were all Stockton football referees.

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    • As an ex- fire officer you have my greatest respects, I am normally quite a brave type of person – butraging fires sort-of-make me hold back and work out far too many “what could go wrong here possibilties”, I’m now so good at working out the odds (of getting injured, burnt or killed) that I have just extended my personal safety zone, meaning the nearest I want to get to a blaze, is now five miles minimum, and I’d rather hide out on Roseberry Topping than be called out to attend to one. Like all of us, I was deeply saddened to read and hear about your brother colleagues deaths in New York on 9-11, and though it’s now 10 years later I still extend my condolences to all concerned.

      PS: My niece married SO Ronnie Carr, Middlesbrough Central Station Officer, did he retire and go to Canada?

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  4. As an apprentice sheetmetalworker between 1960-63 I was sent to Finlaysons in Nelson Terrace to buy acid. I think it was hydrochloric Acid which we used to strip the zinc coating off sheetmetals prior to soldering the joints. Certainly there were no health & safety problems over carrying the container through the streets back to the workshop on Maritime road near the mill.

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  5. I think that the shop that you are thinking about was Finlaysons. In the 1960s they were on Nelson Terrace, nearly opposite the registry office. You went up a flight of wooden steps to the warehouse where you could buy a couple of ounces of chemicals in a paper bag, as easy as getting a quarter of sweets at the corner shop!

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  6. F. Starr, I think the chemical company you refer to is Finlayson Scientific who are now located on Portrack. Along with Galenkamps they supplied chemicals, scientific instruments and glassware along with some excellent illustrated catalogues to many schoolboys for experiments at home. How did we ever survive without H&S?

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  7. I believe the chemical shop that Fred is thinking of was called Finlaysons. This was not located on Prince Regent Street as I recall it, but on the west side of Nelson Terrace close to its junction with Wellington Street.

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  8. Also along this street was a shop selling orgnic and inorganic chemicals, where rather like a library they had rows and rows of bottles of the stuff. I went there a few times to buy stuff for chemical experiments at home. My chemistry teacher, Mr Dee, at Richard Hind, did not encourage this or the buying of chemistry sets as Xmas presents. ‘Far too risky’, he thought. Does anyone recollect the name of the shop? Was it something like Finnisons?

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  9. It would be worth a mention that ICI had a very efficient 24 hour fire service of its own and in my experience they trained almost every man and woman working there in fire fighting small fires. I was sent on a fire course on joining ICI with a group of men and women, it was class work, how the different appliances worked which to use on what type of fire and when not to use them but send for the Fire service fast. Then we had pratical which could be every type of fire from straw fires and damping down to chemical fires usually petrol or oil and gas fires when or when not to close valves to stop a fire. In my case they had a section of gutter on legs with a run down to the floor, they poured petrol in the top and lit it, i had to extinguish the fire before it hit the ground and spread. I went in and started low chasing the fire back up the trough then it suddenly fired behind me. Having been in two very bad fuel fires in the army I automatically ducked out only to be grabbed from behind and told to get back in there you wimp by one of the firemen, I did and got it out with an extra extiguisher but was sure they had set me up as the girls only got a tiny trickle of fire to put out. We did the fire and gas drill every year and also got practice on our own local fires, very often caused despite stringent fire safety on our part, burning welding and grinding sparks in volatile situations can bypass the best safety efforts, we also had our own trained firemen who would be on the job at all times with their gear. I was in three very bad fires there and twice escaped with my crew along pipework away from the fire, ICI fire crews would be on the fire in minutes usually followed by the Stockton Appliances and sometimes even from further afield. In most cases ICI crews managed to get the blaze out with Stockton crews standing by, then came the enquiry, if your squads were involved you better know how it all happened or else.

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  10. Just for the record Stockton Station only had a Pump Escape, Water tender and a TTL the Emergency Tender and Foam Tender were stationed at Billingham and were all almalgamated at the new Norton Stn. From memory the move was quite controversial, the thought being Stockton and areas towards Yarm had been abandonded in favour of the main turnout of ICI.

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    • I was a fireman at Norton from 1970 to 1984 the emergency tender was always at Norton there was no Billingham station, Norton used to cover that area and the foam was carried on the ET, they built Billingham Station because of the pressure from the chemical industry later on in the 70’s we received a Simon Snorkle and the TL was sold at auction, the new Billingham Station had a foam tender because of the chemical threat, and Yarm had a retained station under the viaduct

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  11. If there is anyone out their who can help ? Two local artists have been commissioned to paint a mural on the original Stockton Fire Station Site. We are looking for photo’s from the 1890’s so they can form a collage. Help please.

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  12. I can refer you to an excellent source for Stockton Fire Brigade. A friend of mine has written a book on the History of Durham Fire Brigade (which Stockton was part of up to 1968). This Fire Station was closed in 1965, and it”s appliances (2 Pumps, 1 Turntable Ladder, 1 Emergency Tender, and a Foam Tender) were all transferred to the new build Station currently still in use in Norton. I have a small booklet which gives a brief outline of Stockton Fire Brigade”s History, published for an open day in the late 90″s. Presumably “South Stockton” refers to Thornaby, which was part of the then “North Riding Fire Brigade up to 1968. The current Thornaby Fire Station was a new build one for Teesside Fire Brigade around 1973, passing to the newly formed Cleveland Fire Brigade a year later.

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  13. I am looking to find the history of Stockton and South Stockton Fire Brigade from its formation. If anynone can provide I will be grateful.

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