The complex of associated works on this stretch of the river Don made servicing workshops essential for repair of ironwork and of woodwork. These separate buildings date from perhaps 1750s.
The eastern hull had the blacksmiths’ shop below and the joiners’ shop above (which was accessible only by an external staircase). The western hull (accessible by a separate entrance) has always been known as the foundry but with only a little evidence of this activity. It is claimed that a small extension at the extreme west end might have contained a cementation furnace.
The blacksmiths’ shop now houses the restoration workshop with a range of working machine tools mostly of early 1900s vintage. We have protected any archaeology in the original earth floor by Yorkstone flags.
The Foundry contains a group of medium sized stationary steam engines which operate on compressed air: an 1840s horizontal engine from Wilson’s snuff-mill ; an vertical engine ex Neepsend gasworks mortar-mill; an 1890s Buxton & Thornley horizontal engine; a paired set of 1920s engines by Marshalls of Gainsborough from Rotherham Technical College.
The joiners’ shop contains a collection of smaller stationary engines and machine tools; the 1817 cast iron roof frame from a Strutts’ mill near Derby is of special interest. Patternmaking for casting in the Foundry could have taken place here. It is possible that the skilled joiners might have made an occasional coffin for the nearby villages.