Hyders Plaxtol

Hyders Plaxtol 1965 to 1972

A nostalgic look at a wrought iron work company in Plaxtol that used traditional methods of manufacturing and that was highly successful in the 1960's

Hyders wrought iron fireguard

Peacock fireguard I designed

Drawing office Hyders Plaxtol

John martin in white coat and myself

Winston Churchill brass plaque

I made the pattern for a Churchill brass plaque

Hyders showroom , view of Inglenook close to entrance

Inglenook fireplace in showroom

Hyders wrought iron signage

Wrought iron sign above entrance to workshop

Paint Shop Hyders

Paint shop with Percy and George Sharp

Hyders Plaxtol was a highly successful company that served people like Harrods and had a brilliant reputation for making the best quality Art Metal work and employed the traditional blacksmith who would forge weld ironwork rather than modern day Arc welding.

I was at Hyders from 1965 to 1972 and was trained as a traditional pen and ink artist by Vic Powis, he also taught me a lot about perspectives and wrought iron designs and really gave me a head start in design and graphics work.

During that time I had the pleasure of meeting a few celebrities including film actresses and actors, politicians and even a famous ventriloquist. The most pleasant celebrity I met was a very young Michael Crawford ( Some Mothers do have them )

Blacksmiths shop Hyders

Blacksmiths shop with Charlie King & Tony Broad

Fitters shop Hyders Plaxtol

Fitters shop with Ted Bear in background

Sheet metal shop Hyders

Sheet metal shop with "Uncle" Fred Bone at work

Welders shop Hyders Plaxtol

Welders shop..Notice the lack of protective clothing

Dave Sutton and Ted Bear

Ted Bear (right) and myself with a weather vane made to commemorate Sir Alec Rose's circumnavigation of the world in the Lively Lady yacht.

The funniest incident that ever happened was when an explosion rocked the place , dust fell from the rafters onto my drawing board and Harry Lacey the Blacksmith foreman came running into my office shouting "Where is the Fu##er" looking for the apprentice that had filled a football with acetylene and then placed it on the forge.

The most embarrassing situation was to find a customer, an old girl, who had visited the showroom having a “whoopsie” in the showroom flower beds

Charlie King was another traditional Blacksmith, a kind gentle man who could create absolute wonders in iron, it was easy for me to draw full size elaborate designs on enormous sheets of brown paper but he would make them come alive.

Company motto “Meditate on the joy of wrought Ironwork considering the while that anything made by us will be a thing of beauty and a joy forever”

Photographs were taken from from a small brochure printed in the sixties so the quality is not spectacular