BACK IN THE ALESBURY DAYS

If you ask many of the locals of Edenderry and neighbouring towns, the name Alesbury will spring to mind for most. Long before we, DWK and our sister company FJS along with a host of local enterprises including Kearneys, Rose manufacturing and Sean Breretons Oakwood Tool Hire occupying the business park we had “The Alesbury Yard” which was home to The Alesbury Bros. Timber company.

Who are the Alesbury’s?

The Alesburys brothers, Daniel and John were born and raised in Bristol, England. Both Daniel and John first landed in Edenderry in 1878 and being quakers, made the transition into the small town relatively easy due to the large welcoming group of quakers who who were around since the 1600’s in Edenderry.

 

“Alesbury Bros. became synonymous as a quality timber product manufacturer of furniture, horse and cart accessories, farming equipment and more.”

In The Irish Times 1902 article, ‘Our National Industries: Marvels in Wood,’ Alesbury Bros. products featured as being “the wonderful wood-works” of the Alesbury Brothers, “an enterprising and flourishing firm.” The article also mentioned Edenderry itself as a “dreamy little town.”

The Fire

The buildings that occupies the Edenderry Business Park aren’t the original buildings that were used by the Alesbury Bros. Tragically, in 1904, an outbreak of a catastrophic fire caused the building to be completely destroyed which was a huge set back for the community because many of locals lost their jobs as a result of the fire.

On top of that, the reconstruction of the factory cost in the region of £30,000 which in todays market would roughly be in the region of €4 million.

Irelands first ever car

Even though the Alesbury Bros. were widely known for their huge timber company in the business park, between the years of 1905 and 1910 they decided to branch out into the Automobile Industry with the production of Irelands first car.

“With the exception of the engine and gearbox, a 8/10hp two-cylinder engine which was bought and shipped from Massachusetts-based Stevens-Duryea, the entire car was built and assembled here on Edenderry Business Park.”