The old Thorn Lighting factory in north Leicester, UK opened in 1946 and in its heyday produced approximately 35 million light bulbs annually! By the 1980s, however, competition from low-cost producers in the far east resulted in a long and irreversible decline ending in 2007, when the factory closed putting 380 employees out of work.
After most of its machinery was stripped out and shipped to Hungary, the factory was then abandoned until mid-2011 when the remnants were demolished. “There were just a couple of us and the pigeons in the end,” stated Stuart Wale, who worked at the factory for 44 years. “It was very eerie, very sad.” Flickr user Goldie87 photo-documented the factory’s last days above.
Lamps Over London
The former Osram Lamp Works in Hammersmith & Fulham, central London was redeveloped into the residential Osram Court Estate in 1996. Before that, the decades-old factory had been abandoned for some time. These days, the re-purposed complex is well-lit once more and its distinctive original lightbulb tower still rules the roost at the top of the development. Dauvit Alexander (the justified sinner) snapped the tower on August 2nd of 2011.
This “old bulb factory in Germany,” as Flickr user Industrieller puts it, appears to have been abandoned for some time. Possibly due to conscientious urbex explorers not divulging its exact location, the former factory has mostly escaped the malevolent notice of metal salvagers and graffiti taggers.
What Flickr user alex_nova describes as a Lightbulb Factory towers a dozen or so stories over Zagreb, Croatia in this photo dating from November 16th, 2004. Odd that the building is so tall and thin, in contrast to most factories which place a premium on horizontal working space.