Blackfriars Type Foundry

The picture on the  right is the original building of the Blackfrairs Type Foundry, which can be found at 156 Blackfriars Road London. Formaly the premises of the Wicks Rotary Typecasting Company.
The building its self was built in 1898, the architects that designed it were George Ashby Lean and Sons, these plans were approved by the  planning department on 10th December 1897.
The  Wicks company went into receivership in July 1907 and dissolved in 1909. A buyer was found in the form of three wealthy gentlemen, the brothers Clement & Richard Nicholson and Godfrey Walter, the Great-grandson of  John Walter, the founder of the Times, They called the new company the Blackfriars Type Foundry BTF, their first catalogue was produced in January 1908, this still contained all of the Wicks faces, and a few others, Cadmus, Celtic & Tudor Black, by 1908 Whitefriars was added, 1910 they had added new designs, Greyfriars, Obelisk, Regina & Victoria .

They ran BTF until 1931?, when it too got into financial trouble. The company and equipment was offered to Stephenson Blake who turned it down due to the downturn in letterpress, they did later buy the matrices. The casters and machinery all went to scrap, except one rotary caster, which is in the care of the Science Museum.

 
​Blackfriars Type Foundry Type Specimens
I have been able to track down 8 Type Catalogues produced by the foundry, the largest being the catalogue  of 1925 pictured on the left.

 

  

If you have any information about the Blackfriars Typefoundry please let me know.

© 2019 by Hugh Macfarlane. All rights reserved.

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