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Wainhouse Tower Also known as Wainhouses Folly

 

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  • Wainhouse Tower, Halifax

Other Information

  • Wainhouse Tower is a chimney modified into a folly, the tallest in the world. The building came about thanks to the 1870 Smoke Abatement Act which required factories to have very tall chimneys to try and reduce pollution in Victorian towns.
  • The idea by Isaac Booth in 1871 was to feed the smoke from the Washer Lane Dye Works via a pipe and then up through the chimney and thus construction work started. In 1874 however the Washer Lane Dye Works owner, John Edward Wainhouse, sold the works to the management who then refused to continue funding the construction of what they considered to be an octagonal chimney of pointless height.
  • Wainhouse then employed Richard Swarbrick Dugdale to convert it to a folly, spending 14,000 in the process, with additional extravagant details of stonework added in the process. So dense is the sculpted stonework around the top of the tower that it is impossible to use a telescope to enjoy the views from the upper galleries.
  • Purchased in 1918 by the local council, with 403 steps to the top, the tower is open to the public during bank holidays.

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Architect
Richard Swarbrick Dugdale
Isaac Booth

Reference Data

Reference No.
4364
First Uploaded
19-02-2006
Last Editorial Date
10-03-2011
 

Building Location

Address
Washer Lane, Sowerby Bridge, Halifax. HX2
Council
Calderdale Metropolitan District
County
West Yorkshire
Region
Yorkshire and Humber
Country
United Kingdom

Building Specification

Status
Complete
Proposal date
1871
Construction start date
1871
Completion date
1875
Renovation Date
2009
Style
Venetian

Roof Height (AGL)
83.80

Market Data

Primary Use
Folly


Construction Cost
£14,000.00
Budget Date
1875

Metres > Feet