Penarth Dock, South Wales - 150 years - the heritage and legacy  
Penarth Dock, South Wales - the heritage & legacy . . .

Volume Two - The Era of Optimism, Investment & Development - Growth of coal exports . .

Anti-breakage coal box
An anti-breakage coal box for the new coal tips from The Engineer periodical as published in July and August 1901. [015] [016].
 
'The Despatch' patent anti-breakage coal box

'The Despatch' patented, 3 ton capacity, anti-breakage coal box as used at Penarth Dock by the TVR. The diagram indicates the use of the device and is from a technical magazine, probably 'Engineering' but, I am not sure and the gentleman who kindly sent it to me was also unsure of its origin. Your assistance would be appreciated. [000] [002]

However, the concept of an anti-breakage box was nothing new. Indeed, I. K. Brunel had designed an almost identical device for use with friable coals at the Briton Ferry and Swansea Docks for the Vale of Neath Railway during September 1851. They were one of the first container shipment devices in that these boxes were transported by train to the dock and lowered into the hold of the ship. The floor of the box was hinged and the coal was deposited by opening the hinge mechanism.

Mr. B's sketch of his anti-breakage boxes is kept at the University of Bristol in its special collections section. Although it has to be said that Mr. B probably borrowed the concept from Thomas Powell, who was the first to develop an iron container for coal; used on the Aberdare canal for loading coals from the tramways to the canal barges.

 
Anti-breakage box used in shipping coal at Penarth Dock, Taff Vale Railway.
Anti-breakage box used in shipping coal at Penarth Dock, Taff Vale Railway. The photograph appeared within 'The Ways of Our Railways' by Charles H. Grinling published in 1911. [719] [716] [20190728]
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