Steeton Dump WW2 Royal Ordnance Factory

The Royal Ordnance Factory at Steeton Dump was built from scratch in late 1940 and began production in early 1941. Over a four year period until late April early March 1945, Over four thousand staff worked in this period for the war effort.
The staff were rewarded with a royal visit in March 1942 when King George VI and Queen Elizabeth came for a tour of the factory. They visited the 1000 seater canteen and spoke to some of the workers. Apparently every soldier's wife who worked there was entitled to a holiday if their husband came home on leave.

Statistics were released after the factory's closure stating that it had produced 204 million munition components, including 63 million shells and 120 million 20mm cases. At its peak it employed over 4,000 workers and two thirds were unskilled women, many of whom were drafted there as an alternative to conscription into the armed forces.

Special trains and buses were used each day to transport the workers from 62 towns and villages, as far apart as Bradford, Nelson and Barnoldswick.

Staff provided most of their own lunch-time entertainment, but had an ENSA concert once a fortnight.

"The Dump" even ran it's own farm of seven acres, raising pigs and producing vegetables for consumption in the works canteen.

Text courtesy of the late Ian Dewhirst MBE.

In January 1943, Mrs Winifred Feeney and Mrs Minnie Stovold, two of the factory's shop stewards, were awarded the MBE. more on the Staff who worked there

The factory was protected by a defensive group of pillboxes and plans may have been made to extend these but the war came to an end before this could happen. more on the Steeton Pillboxes

Comments are closed.