Rockware Avenue, UB6

Place Name

Industrial history. This street name remembers Rockware Glass, manufacturers of glass containers, which had its London base in Greenford between 1919 and 1973, by 1959 the company employed 1,220 people on a 14 hectare (35 acre) site. The former Grand Union Canal site, over which this street was laid out, was developed from William Asbury Bailey’s glassworks and Purex lead works. Bailey had transferred the family business, founded by his grandfather in Scotland sometime around 1840, to Greenford in 1900. The purpose built factory of the newly formed company Rockware Glass Syndicate Ltd opened the following year. For more than 40 years, the factory’s chimneys, piles of broken glass, and railway sidings, dominated Greenford. More sites were taken on in the intervening years including at Doncaster, where a new factory opened in 1969, replacing the Greenford works which eventually closed in 1973. By 1977 more than a quarter of every glass bottle sold in the UK was made by the company.

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