National Recording Project


Detail from: Memorial to 158 Squadron by Peter W. Naylor, 2009

The Beam Engine


Type Readymade

     A typical example of an early nineteenth century engine, it comprises a vertical double acting steam cylinder coupled via an eight metre rocking beam to a double acting air cylinder. It has been erected to monumental effect with rocking beam in mid-stroke, the cast iron components painted green, contrasting with the evenly spaced red-brick supports.
     Erected by the City as a monument to Birmingham's industrial past when the inner ringroad was completed, this Ready made was originally a beam engine from the Netherton foundry of Grazebrook & Whitehouse and was in working order when presented to the City by the Grazebrook family and dismantled in 1964.(1) Although there is a traditional belief that this engine was made at Boulton and Watt's Soho factory, there is no certain evidence for this.

Contributor details

Contributor Role
Birmingham City Enginneer's Department, None Other

Element details

Part of work Material Dimensions
Beam Engine Cast Iron, painted 9.6m wide

PMSA recording information

Reference Region
WMbiBIxx081 BM
General condition Good
Surface condition
  • No damage
Structural condition
  • None
  • None
Road Dartmouth Circus
Precise location Centre of Dartmouth Circus Roundabout
A-Z ref None
OS ref None

Sorry, we have no precise geographical information for this item.

Date of design None
Year of unveiling 1965
Unveiling details None
Commissioned by Birmingham City Council
Duty of care Birmingham City Council
Listing status Not listed
At risk? Not at risk

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