Robey & Co Ltd
Robert Robey was born in Nottingham in 1826. He established the business in Lincoln in 1854 with George Lamb Scott as Robey & Scott, at the Perseverance Ironworks. In 1854 Robey & Scott built the first iron framed threshing machine. Another partner Thomas Gamble joined the firm, Scott resigned in September 1856 and the company became Gamble & Robey.
In 1861 the firm produced its first portable steam engine, moving on to traction engines. They also made steam engines for industry, railways and steam wagons for the road.
Robeys was an important employer in Lincoln, employing 114 men by 1865. By 1868 the firm was known as Robey & Co Ltd. The Perseverance Ironworks was enlarged in 1871 and covered a total area along Canwick Road of seven acres.
Electrical plant supplied by Robeys lit Lincoln Cathedral to celebrate both the Golden and Diamond Jubilees of Queen Victoria. The electric winding gear for Blackpool Tower was produced by Robeys. Robeys main customers for winding gear were coal mines.
The strength of their general steam engineering business in boilers, stationary engines, etc. enabled the firm to survive the decline of agricultural steam business after the First World War.
The firm added road rollers to the product range in the 1920s, and after 1945 moved into electrical and diesel engineering, finally going out of business in February 1988.
The Robey Trust is a charitable organisation, located in Tavistock, Devon, dedicated to the preservation, restoration, operation and display of steam vehicles and other historic engines, especially items manufactured by Robey & Co Ltd of Lincoln.
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