Armley: Green light for demolition of historic Blakey’s Factory

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Demolition: The former Blakey's foundry in Armley. Photo: Google

Plans to demolish a dilapidated former iron works which used to cause a hideous smell across Armley have been approved by Leeds council planners.

The site, off Carr Crofts, Modder Place and Modder Avenue, consists of former mill buildings which used to be the Blakey’s factory. The company was famous for manufacturing shoe and boot protectors from the site.

A map of the buildings to be demolished.

Applicant Lisa McShane, of Allclear Demolitions, said in her demolition application to Leeds City Council:

“The building is in a very dilipidated, unsafe condition and is infested with rats. There has previously been an accident on site. We feel the building needs to be demolished ASAP.

“The site will be left safe, level and clear on completion of the demolition works. The site has no future development plans and the building is being demolished due to its unsafe condition.”

Blakey’s segs – shoe and boot protectors – were invented in 1880 by Keighley-born John Blakey. 

The Blakey’s factory was notorious for distributing a hideous odour throughout the district. The factory, set next to residential streets, also had its own direct rail link for receiving raw materials and distributing finished goods.

Goodwins of Walsall in the West Midlands bought the Blakey’s brand in 2014 and continue to protect the nation’s soles.

Find out more about Blakey’s Armley factory here and here.

WLD first revealed the proposals in January. The demolition plans can be viewed here.



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