Prodorite Limited

Prodorite Limited was registered in London on 14th September, 1925, and soon opened the company's factory and offices at Eagle Works, Leabrook Road, Wednesbury.

Prodorite was named after 'Prodorit', a corrosion proof pitch concrete material developed in the early 1920s in Switzerland by Produits Organiques. The Swiss firm developed a process for manufacturing sugar from wood under the trade name 'Prodor'. The process produced corrosive substances, and so 'Prodorit' was developed.

Prodorite acquired the manufacturing rights for 'Prodorit' and further developed and improved the product. Initially sales were poor because businesses were reluctant to spend money on improving the conditions in their workshops and factories.

An advert from 1957.


An advert from 1949.

Sales began to improve in the mid 1930s when the government ordered a number of new power stations, each of which was to have fume chimneys with acid-proof linings. The acid-proof linings were made of Prodorite's anti-corrosive cement, which was ordered in large quantities.

Within a few years the corrosion proof materials were in great demand for use in the many ordnance factories that were built as part of the re-armament programme in readiness for the Second World War.

During the war Prodorite was almost entirely engaged in servicing the ordnance factories, and employed over 500 people to carry out the work. The company also applied protective coatings to the water tanks that were used in armoured vehicles. In order to carry out this work, Prodorite acquired Junction Works on the corner of Leabrook Road and Potters Lane. After the war, Junction Works was used for plant and vehicle maintenance.

Some of Prodorite's heavy duty industrial flooring installed at a power station.

In the late 1940s Proderite quickly realised the usefulness of the newly developed plastic materials and began to produce a range of products including polythene, and p.v.c. Although there was little interest at first, sales eventually improved, which led to the formation of the Plastics, Fabrications, Linings, and Coatings Division based at the William Burton Works, named after the company's founder.

Prodorite continued to develop new specialised products which were widely used in the building industry, and for leisure and sporting activities. Many uses were found for the acid-proof coatings in nuclear power stations, the steel industry, the chemical industry, the fertiliser industry, and in the food and drink industry. Industrial floor coatings were also developed including the well known 'Ferrogan' steel-faced flags, 'Consol' steel anchor floor plates, and 'Prodordur' in-situ floor covering.

An advert from 1954.

By the 1970s over 500 people were employed at Eagle Works, which was organised into three divisions:

The Materials Division controlled manufacturing, development, and marketing.
The Contract Division oversaw contract work, and the design and installation of industrial plant.
The Plastics Division controlled plastic fabrication, and coating work.
In 1968 Prodorite took over W. Chattaway Limited , construction engineers, and steelwork fabricators based in Great Bridge, in order to extend the structural steelwork operations.

W. Chattaway Limited had previously been acquired by Proderite's founder, and former chairman William A. Burton in 1941. Its acquisition allowed Proderite to produce warehouses, welded fabrications, and roof trusses. Prodorite had been working with Chattaways since the 1950s, jointly producing continuous strip pickle tanks.

An advert from 1977.

In the 1960s and 1970s the extended product range included steel framed structures with up to a one hundred foot span, general fabrications up to 8 tons, roof tracks for window-cleaning high rise buildings, and special bodies for road vehicles.

Like many other local manufacturers, Prodorite was taken over. The corrosion proof products are now made in India, and all traces of Eagle Works have disappeared.

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