14-ton tank wagon 14-ton tank wagon 14-ton tank wagon

PW013 Jas.Williamson & Son Ltd
14-ton tank wagon
Black with unshaded white lettering


Linoleum, or 'lino' as it is usually called, was invented in the 1850s by the English industrialist Frederick Walton. This durable floor covering, made principally from cork dust and linseed oil, soon proved popular for domestic and commercial use and sold well. It wasn't long before competitors were muscling in on this burgeoning new market and grabbing themselves a piece of the action, and in this business jungle the biggest teeth and claws belonged to James Williamson, the Lino King. While other manufacturers went for the high-quality end of the market, Williamson realised that the big money was to be made by churning out the cheap stuff in huge quantities, and this strategy paid off handsomely. By the end of the Victorian era, the Williamson family business in Lancaster had become a vast industrial enterprise, and their enormous Lune Mills factory covered twenty-one acres and churned out lino by the mile. Raw materials came in and the end product went out by rail, with Williamson flexing his muscles to have a rail link to the port of Heysham constructed in 1883. The company went from strength to strength, making Williamson, or Baron Ashton as he was by then, a very wealthy man indeed. In his later years he became something of a recluse, although he continued to run the company as his own personal fiefdom until his death in 1930 at the age of 88. Without his guiding hand the business went into a decline, and finally closed in 1999. The Lune Mills works, where our wagon would once have delivered the oils and chemicals to keep the lino presses rolling, is now a derelict wasteland, and Williamson's is no more.
Bring back the glory days of the Lino King on your layout with our Williamson tank.

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