The Star Factories

The company owned several factories, located in Frederick Street, Dobbs Street, Pountney Street, and Stewart Street. Edward Lisle's first factory was at 27 Pountney Street. He went into partnership with Edwin Sharratt who had previously purchased the factory from Humber. They produced bicycles under the Sharratt and Lisle name, and the factory was called Star Cycle Works. The factory is believed to have been opposite Lion Iron Works, behind a row of houses. It can be seen at the bottom of the map below. After three years the partnership was dissolved and Edward continued to make Sharratt and Lisle bicycles in part of the factory, after going into partnership with a Mr. Parker. The business survived until 1895 when it went into liquidation with debts of over £800.

In 1883 Edward founded the Star Cycle Company with a starting capital of £120,000. From 1886 he began producing bicycles with the Star name, and by 1889 had purchased a factory in Stewart Street, which could well have belonged to Hinde, Harrington & Company, who produced 'Desideratum' bicycles.

The area before the Star factories were built. It is based on the 1885 Ordnance Survey map.

This later map is based on the 1901 revision of the earlier map. It clearly shows Moxley Foundry which had been built when Frederick Street and Thomas Street were extended. The firm's later factory in Pountney Street was still occupied by Wearwell. The factory must have been acquired by Star when Wearwell went into liquidation in 1911. The Stewart Street factory is clearly marked on the map. At this time the site of the future Dobbs Street and Frederick Street factory was still open land .

The Star factories in 1913.

Moxley Foundry which covers and area over 24,250 square feet on the corner of Frederick Street and Thomas Street included the following:

Ground Floor:
Carpenter's Shop, 54ft. by 23ft.
Garage, 102ft. by 25ft.
Polishing and Plating Shop, and Repairs Machine Shop, 85ft. by 23ft.
Repairs Stores, 70ft. by 23ft.
Despatch Office and Stores, and Repairs Shop, 110ft. by 48ft.

First Floor:
Managing Director's Office.
General Office with accommodation for the General Manager, Secretary, Cashier, Buying Office, Sales Office, and Stationery Stores.
Pattern Shop, 147ft. by 23ft.
Repairs Stores.
Tool Room, 155ft. by 23ft.

The central courtyard contained a boiler house, an oil store, and toilets.

Frederick Street / Dobbs Street Factory consisted of a two storey brick building in Frederick Street with single storey workshops at the rear, covering an area of 25,227 square feet.

Two storey building:

Ground Floor:
Foreman's Office.
Wheel and Tyre Stores.

First Floor:
Repairs and Sales Offices.
Wheel Stores.

Rear Workshops:

Erecting Shop, 160ft. by 110ft.
Running-In Test Shop, 60ft. by 35ft. (including the Foreman's Office).
Stores Shed.
Erecting Shop Stores.
Radiator Stores.
Blacksmith's Shop, 55ft. by 35ft.
Cycle and General Stores.
Boiler House.

Pountney Street Factory:

A three story building fronting onto Pountney Street with single storey workshops behind, covering an area of 54,864 square feet.

Front Building:

Ground Floor:
Entrance Hall.
Manager's Office.
Foreman's Office.
Costs Office.

First Floor:
Three Offices.
Three toilets and wash room.

Second Floor:
Drawing Office.
Blue Print Room.
Head Draughtsman's Office.

Hardening Shop, 110ft. by 40ft.
Drawing Stores.
Rough Stores.
Mess Room.
General Machine Shop, 125ft. by 105ft.
Tool Stores.
Machine Shop, 100ft. by 60ft.
Grinding Shop.

Boiler House.
Plumber's Shop.

One of the company's houses, next door in Pountney Street was used as the Time Office, and Scrap Store.  

Star's factories in Frederick Street, Pountney Street, and Stewart Street in the late 1920s.

Photographs of the Factories

View the photographs

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