GQA Qualifications Blog

Thursday 12 December 2013

English Heritage and the Glass Container Sector

 BBC1 is screening a new series on Heritage at Risk and recently featured a landmark which is protected because of its historical connections with the glass industry.

Producers had selected items from the English Heritage listing of those sites most at risk. In the St Helens case it is Cannington Shaw’s bottle shop, classed as a Scheduled Ancient Monument.
The building has been highlighted by English Heritage as being of both national and international importance.
Tank furnaces helped the rapid development of local bottlemaking, giving rise to the St Helens pre-eminence in the 1870s as a bottle making centre, exporting all over the world.
John Cannington, who came from a Bristol family had entered the bottle making business in St Helens in 1866, in partnership with Edwin Cannington and John Shaw. Cannington Shaw employed bottle makers at their Sherdley Glass Works, Nuttall at Ravenhead, and Lyon. The Lyon family, who were mineral water makers, had taken over the Thatto Heath glasshouse, and later took possession of the Peasley Bottle Works.
In 1890 they were taken over by Cannington Shaw. By 1892 CS employed 1,188 men and women and were described as the largest works of its kind in the world. In l913 Cannington Shaw amalgamated with five other bottle manufacturers, including Nuttalls, to form United Glass Bottle Manufacturers Ltd.
Shortly after this, the No.7 bottle making shop fell into disuse and by 1918 was simply used as a store. It was used as an air-raid shelter in World War II. It survived the 1982 site clearance. 
The programme (Heritage at Risk) was shown on Thursday, December 5, at 7.30pm