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Author Holmans building
derrickman

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Joined: 18/02/2009

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Holmans building
Posted: 23/11/2009 19:20:27
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but you have to ask, what happened to all this to turn it into 'heritage'? Holmans never made any serious attempt to move into the then-new technology of hydraulics, as opposed to pneumatics. If we can't make this stuff, why do we still have JCB? Why did Caterpillar buy an engine factory in Peterborough?

I've watched the progressive decline and collapse of BSA and the rest, the failure of management in the car industry in problems with product quality in the 70s; the total failure to grasp the opportunities of the revolutionary new technology in the North Sea, compared to the Norwegian experience.


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carnkie

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Joined: 07/09/2007
Location: camborne, cornwall

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Holmans building
Posted: 23/11/2009 21:02:26
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But the importance to the history of Camborne cannot really be questioned.

"The most successful Cornish engineering firm was Holman Brothers Ltd., established at Cambome in 1801. During the period 1861-190I when most towns in Cornwall connected to mining saw a decrease in their population, Cambome was one of the very few that actually increased its numbers (l,273 between 1861-1901) -the reason being that the decline of Cambome's mining activity was neutralised by the expansion of its engineering, and in particular by the rapid growth of the Holman enterprise. Holmans began their trade with South Africa in 1889, their reputation being secured with the manufacture of their Cornish Rock Drill which was very successful, for by 1896 there were more than a thousand in use on the Rand and three years later the number had risen to two thousand. There was other equipment as well, for on one occasion the Mining Journal stated that two Cornish compressors, several pumping and drawing lifts & a good consignment of rock drills were on their way to South Africa from Holmans".

Richard D. Dawe Cornish Pioneers in South Africa

Mind I don't think we'll look too closely at the history of the widow-maker.

--

The past is a foreign country: they do things differently there.
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Knocker

Joined: 17/06/2008

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Holmans building
Posted: 24/11/2009 00:55:24
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Holmans fatal error was the merger with Broomwade, Holmn Brothers specialised in making mining equipment - they were the Tamrock/Atlas Copco of the day. Broomwade were a compressed air company. The first thing Holmans lost as a result of the merger was the R&D department and as a result as derrickman states they failed to grasp electro hydraulics - if they had graspped that, they would probably still be a major manufacturer of mining equipment competing with Tamrock and Atlas, but thats history. IP: 90.221.179.80
derrickman

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Holmans building
Posted: 24/11/2009 05:53:49
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Atlas Copco make compressors, still do; sounds like Holman tried to play Atlas at their own game, chose an unsuitable partner and over-reached themselves, a common situation. IP: 82.32.67.44
Cornish Pixie

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Joined: 02/01/2009
Location: Wicklow, Ireland

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Holmans building
Posted: 24/11/2009 11:33:44
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Indeed, Camborne is in the heart of the Cornish Mining World Heritage Site (WHS) and I know that where the Holman's building was concerned, strong representation was made to Kerrier's planning department that the historic integrity of the building be retained in any 'adaptive re-use'. However, if the local planning authority has other ideas, this can bring a WHS into conflict with councillors, local planners and the local authority who wish to plough ahead with their agenda of 'regeneration' that will bring jobs and economic improvement (retail outlets, new housing etc.).

I foresee many more such Holman's issues in the future in Cornwall as the WHS seeks to protect its authenticty and integrity. Hayle will be one to watch. Conflict with local planners/councils over what constitutes suitable economic development in a WHS setting is well exemplified in the Orkney Islands.

Scottish Ministers called for a seven-day public local inquiry in Stromness, following objections from Historic Scotland over the visual impact of the plans to erect three 900kw wind turbines at Merranblo (near Stromness) in the buffer zone of the Heart of Neolithic Orkney World Heritage Site. Orkney Islands Council gave planning permission to the project against its own planning department’s advice, with Councillors on the environment, planning and protective services committee saying the turbines should be granted because they would provide local economic and renewable energy benefits, and that any visual impact on the landscape and on the World Heritage Site would not be adverse. Scottish Ministers subsequently threw the plans out.

The Orkney Islands Council had this to say:
As a non-statutory designation, the rationale for retaining a WHS is crucially dependent on its benefits to the host area, and that its obligations stay a long way short of the tipping point where constraints overtake benefits. The massive proposed outer buffer zone suggests that it would bring such a tipping point into effect. If the WHS loses its positive balance for Orkney, then its rationale collapses and the Orkney Islands Council in particular with its mission of governing for the benefit of all of Orkney and its people, could no longer justify supporting the WHS.

I guess the key challenge for Orkney and indeed Cornwall, is how to protect our heritage without stymying economic development that could adversely affect the future viability and sustainability of local communities.

Camborne is the best example of an industrial town in the whole of Cornwall and it is worrying that its industrial heritage has been undermined by the demolition of some of its best assets. If the sites of former industry have been cleared to make way for real jobs bringing real economic benefits to the area, then all well and good, but is this the case? CPR regeneration, one of the Government's 19 urban regeneration companies, oversees one of the largest urban renewal projects in the UK driving the regeneration of up to 1.5 square km of land with the aim of creating more than 4,000 jobs and increasing wages in the area by 15%. They have yet to achieve this. Many doubt they ever will.

--

Den heb davaz a gollaz i dir
IP: 89.204.197.90 Edited: 24/11/2009 14:32:37 by Cornish Pixie
Knocker

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Holmans building
Posted: 24/11/2009 13:15:44
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Derrickman, Holman's too had made compressors for many years, the problem was all of broomwades r&d went into compressors for maqny different industries, where holmans developed compressors for the mining industry as a power source for their own principal product, unfortunately broomwade led to the ancillary product becoming the principle product, there was the mistake.

Holmans failing to take on hydraulics, was like failing to move on fro steam power.
IP: 90.221.179.80
ttxela

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Joined: 04/09/2007
Location: Cambs

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Holmans building
Posted: 24/11/2009 13:34:56
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derrickman wrote:

Atlas Copco make compressors, still do; sounds like Holman tried to play Atlas at their own game, chose an unsuitable partner and over-reached themselves, a common situation.


Very fine they are too, we've not long had a new one installed for our filling/capping plant. A massive improvement on the clanking heap of grease we used to have. Smile
IP: 91.143.75.2
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