The Early Years

My father, Charles Aaron Weight, was born on 28th August 1875. His family lived at 35a Chester Terrace, Eaton Square, London and they ran a newspaper shop. There were four brothers, Charles, Alfred, Harry and Leonard.

My father was largely self-educated and taught himself shorthand. After teaching at Pitman's College, he obtained a job with Bell’s Asbestos Company Limited and worked his way up rapidly, becoming the company's Midland representative, covering the Cannock Chase, Hednesford and Stoke on Trent coalfields. He lived at 184 Waterloo Road, Wolverhampton.

On 19th August, 1912, in Hednesford, he married Constance May Blagg (born 27th December, 1889), who had two brothers, George and Fred Blagg. They were ironmongers and builders' merchants. I, Charles G. Weight, was born on he 29th January, 1914.

Charles Aaron Weight.

I do not have a complete account of my father’s business activities, but I do know some features of it. At some point my Father decided to leave Bell’s Asbestos and seek his own fortune.

In 1905 he started operating three canal narrow boats, collecting charcoal from Netherton and delivering it to Ettingshall. This enterprise came to a sudden end in 1910 when, in the course of widespread industrial unrest in the country, his three barges were sunk.

On 6th April, 1910 he bought 2 acres of land at Chillington Fields from the Chillington Iron Company, and Sir Alfred Hickman, for £68. 10s. 11d..

In 1914, when my Father was 39, he joined up, serving in Egypt and Palestine and was not discharged until 5th March, 1919.

In that year he, and two men, Harry Goodhead, and Jack Rhodes, started a business making the pipe and boiler insulation material known as "monkey muck". This was made out of the "Toccio" dirt, (which was abundant on his site and in the locality, it being the waste material from the surface coal gin pits), mixed with asbestos and gypsum.

By 1920 vast quantities of war surplus material were being auctioned off by the Government and my Father purchased all sorts of merchandise cheaply and resold it, after any necessary repairs, reconditioning and re-packing and, sometimes, re-working. For example he bought thousands of aeroplane propellers which he made into fire fenders and mantelpiece clocks. And he bought vast quantities of piano wire, which he had woven into of an inch flexible wire rope of the highest quality.

In 1922 my Father spotted another opportunity when the Briton Car Company went into liquidation.

He bought it and moved everything to Chillington Fields, where he continued production from the available parts and components, eventually selling about 600 vehicles.

A Little Briton.


     A Briton car owned by Eric Langton, Applecross, Western
In 1924 my Father set up the Staffordshire Engineering and Boiler Covering Company Limited, which carried on his boiler and pipe insulation business.

Its name was formally changed to SEBCO Limited in 1934.


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