Enfield, Nottingham

When the factory was closed the people who had the job of emptying it said it looked like the workers were on a fire drill. There were half finished cups of coffee, work still in the machines half finished, completed weapons in racks, pallets of machined parts just unloaded from lorries etc.


Royal Small Arms Factory

In 1804 a government-owned factory for making musket barrels was set up at Lewisham. In 1812 land was acquired at Enfield Lock for an enlarged factory. (The new site had the advantages of water power available to drive machinery and the Lee Navigation for the transportation of raw materials and the finished weapons). The new factory was completed too late to affect the outcome of the Napoleonic War. In 1816 the barrel branch moved from Lewisham to Enfield. By 1818 the reduction in demand for small arms meant that there were just thirty men employed at the Enfield factory. Later in 1818 the lock and finishing branches were transferred to Enfield, enabling the Lewisham site to be dispensed with. A sword making branch was set up in 1823. The factory narrowly fought off a threat of closure in 1831. The Crimean War of 1854/5 resulted in a big increase in demand for both small arms and ammunition. In 1857 the factory was completely reorganized on mass production lines. The factory continued in operation, with periods of great activity during the Boer War and the two World Wars. In 1987 the Royal Ordnance Factories (including Enfield Lock) were sold to British Aerospace. The Enfield Lock plant was closed almost immediately and small arms manufacture was moved to Nottingham.

Thanks to ... ... for above text.

Anyway, heres some artifacts that were saved and are in my own collection ...

Sign showing workers how to stack SA80s on the weapons trolleys. Sign removed 5/12/2001.

The first foregrip set off the machine after the tool refurbishment. The date on the label is 19/11/98.

HK plastic bag that contained three trigger guards which are now on my three weapons.

A gas parts cover untrimmed.

A sign showing workers how to stack the SA80s in their racks. Sign removed 5/12/2001.

Experimental cocking lever set.

Ex-workers are welcome to add text on this site if they wish. Stories, working practices etc.

The latest is that the factory has been levelled ready to build on.

Some weapons from this factory have been de-activated and are available here ...

For more SA80 related information see our sister site here ...