Closure came to the Worksop factory in 1981. For some time there had
been a tailing off of work. The Worksop Guardian for the 4th July 1975
contained the following article:
100 Redundant at Worksop
Raleigh Industries announced on Wednesday that almost 100 of the Worksop
workforce will become redundant on 8th August.
"For some time," a spokesman told the Guardian, "the
Worksop factory has been manufacturing specialist bicycles mainly for
the American market.
"Following a serious and continuing trade recession in the United
States, we have found it necessary to reduce the manufacturing programme
and for some time now the factory has been on a three day week.
"We do not see any immediate improvement in this situation and
with a reduced programme there is no prospect of maintaining normal
working for some considerable time.
"Over the past few months every effort has been made to maintain
employment for as many people as possible but with a reduced programme
of activety we have, with regret, informed our employees at Worksop
that it will be necessary to reduce our manning levels by almost 100
"Discussions have taken place with the Unions concerned and, as
a result, it has been agreed that those affected will become redundant
on 8th August.
"This will enable the remainder of the workforce to return to a
"No other Raleigh Company is affected.
In 1979 the factory was closed and the workforce laid off indefinately
due to the nationwide engineering workers strike. From the Worksop Guardian
of 21st September 1979.
160 Laid-off as Worksop Factory Closes.
One hundred and sixty workers at Worksop's Carlton Cycles plant were
laid-off indefinately on Wednesday afternoon as the factory fell victim
to the nationwide engineering unions dispute.
As officials at the parent company, TI Raleigh Industries, were expecting
1979 to be a record year for cycle sales, the three-day week and work-to-rule
brought on by the industrial trouble put paid to the firms high hopes.
"The Carlton Cycles factory closed at 4.30, indefinately,"
said a spokesman, "and hourly-paid workers have been laid-off,
though office staff will continue to work as normal.
"We were hoping for 1.3 to 1.4 million sales in the United Kingdom,
and of course the cycles made at the Worksop plant would have been at
the prestige end of the market, being hand-built and sports models.
"The trouble is that the stoppages have reached such a point that
we cannot continue."
The dispute between the Confederation of Shipbuilding and Engineering
Unions and employers is based around a claim for a minimum 80 pounds
a week wage for craftsmen.
Stoppages have put much of Britain on a three-day week and threatens
bankruptcies and mass unemployment.
Two million workers are involved in the dispute.
The end came in 1981. The Worksop Guardian for 29th May 1981 had the
No more will the famous Carlton be made in Worksop.
Carlton Cycles, one of Worksop's oldest factories, finally ground to
a halt on Friday.
And now the building on Kilton Road which in its heydey was occupied
by 300 workers and even kept going through the recession-hit thirties
will be put up for sale.
TI Raleigh, the parent company, in Nottingham, decided some weeks ago
to close the plant and give notice to the 202 employees.
On Friday the last batch of them - 50 from the production department
- finally left.
Manager Mr Brian Adkins, who said a skeletal staff would man the site
to wind up the operation, commented: "It is a sad day for Carlton
Cycles. The workers could see the logic and reasons for the closure
but it does not take anything away from the fact that a lot of them
had been with the firm for a long time.
"Many of them will be on the streets without a job for the first
time in their lives."
Poor industrial relations over a period of years coupled with the gloomy
economic climate, he said, had contributed to the downfall of the factory
which was set up in 1898 in Carlton-in-Lindrick by Fred Hanstock.
It has had a chequered past but until the final cruel blow had always
managed to ride the stormiest of conditions.
Worksop man Mr. Edwin Haslehurst started with the firm as a 14-year-old
apprentice in 1931 when there were only four workers including the founder.
Mr. Haslehurst, who would have been with the Company for 50 years in
June, told me he was saddend by the closure. Unlike some of his colleagues
he had decided to call it a day when the firm packed up and was taking
He recalled the firm moved from Carlton to Worksop in 1936.
During the thirties as well as making bikes - on average about two a
day - they had, because work was scarce, carried out repairs and even
made milk barrows.
TI Raleigh took over in 1960 when the firm was based on Dock Road. But
only two years later the premises were completely destroyed by a fire.
Determined not to be beaten they had set themselves up in business only
a few months later operating from the present site.
Until recently the factory produced over 80,000 top quality bikes for
the home and overseas market.
The factory will be completely empty except for security staff by the
end of August.
The Carlton name will not disappear. Machines bearing the famous name
will be produced in a scaled down operation in Nottingham.
Following the closure a small group of ex-Carlton workers got together
and made Columbia Cycles at Worksop for a while.
Even though not produced at Worksop any more, Raleigh continued to
use the initial W letter on the frame number for Nottingham built Carlton