Scottish shale Scottish shale

Kirkwood Oil Works

Alternative names:
Coatbridge Oil Works
Former parish and county:
Parish of Old Monkland, Lanarkshire
Local authority:
North Lanarkshire
Built c.1867
Presumably demolished c.1880
Current status of site:
Cinema and entertainment park
Regional overview:


Redwood notes that the works operated between 1866 and 1878, were equipped with 109 Griffiths Patent Retorts, produced crude and refined oils, and also bought-in crude oil. He also notes "Coatbridge Oil Works, which were locally known as Waterford Oil Work on account of most of the officials and workmen being Irishmen. The work was situated at Kirkwood, near Coatbridge, and consisted of 109 Griffith's patent retorts, and a refinery that was capable of handling the crude oil produced at other works in the district as well as its own - the total amount of crude oil it refined averaging 2,746,000 gallons per year. The gas coals of the district, bonnets and shales of different kinds, were retorted, and yielded about 40 gallons of crude oil per ton of mineral. This work was sold in 1878 but, owing to the purchasers failing to obtain a lease of the minerals, it was closed after that date."

Mapped by the Ordnance Survey of c.1864.

  • Rateable value by year
    • Date Rateable Value Owner Occupier Notes
      1867 £865 Coatbridge Oil Company Coatbridge Oil Company Empty. Partners: William G D, Robert Malcolmson
      1868-69 £1400 Coatbridge Oil Company Coatbridge Oil Company Work & Land
      1870 £2900 Coatbridge Oil Company Coatbridge Oil Company Work & Land
      1871 £2907 Coatbridge Oil Company Coatbridge Oil Company Work & Land
      1872 £2921 Coatbridge Oil Company Coatbridge Oil Company Work & Land
      1873 £2781 Coatbridge Oil Company Coatbridge Oil Company Work & Land
      1874-75 £2817 Coatbridge Oil Company Coatbridge Oil Company Work & Land
      1876-78 £1200 Coatbridge Oil Company Coatbridge Oil Company Work & Land
      1879 £560 Coatbridge Oil Company Coatbridge Oil Company Empty
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  • Newspaper references

      An accident of a serious character occurred at the Coatbridge Oil Works on Thursday afternoon, whereby Mr Rennie, manager, and Mr Graham, of Messrs John Graham & Sons, boiler makers, Glasgow were both severely burned. Mr Graham was making an inspection of the works in company with Mr Rennie, who was showing him something about the furnace, and had raised the damper for the purpose when the sulphurous gas was forced into the furnace and an explosion followed, burning the two about the face and neck, and also Rennie's hands and wrists. Dr Adams attended on Rennie, and Mr Graham was sent home.

      Glasgow Herald, 8th February 1868


      COATBRIDGE OILWORKS, ON TUESDAY AND WEDNESDAY 13th and 14th APRIL at the WORKS, near COATBRIDGE. IMPORTANT SALE OF DISTILLING, REFINING and PARAFFIN PLANT, STEAM ENGINES and BOILERS, KIRK'S FREEZZING MACHINE, by Norman, DONKEY and PUMPING ENGINES, HYDRAULUC PRESSES and PUMPS, 54 TANKS (many nearly new), including 6 Large Circular Tanks, 8ft cir x 11'6" high; 2 47ft cir. X 14'9"high; C.I. Plate Tank. 46' x 16'; 3 Rectangular Tanks; 6 Upright Tanks, and 40 Boiler Tanks, several suitable for Steam, capacities from 1100 to 52,500 Gals. 14 C.I., and M.I. STILLS. CONDENSERS, RETORTS, SMALL GASOMETER, EXPERIMENTAL STILLS, About 500 C.I. STEAM and OIL PIPES, Two-Ton CRANE, SIDING RAILS, Lot IRON COAL HUTCHES, TRUCK WEIGHING-MACHINES, by Pooley & Smith. Whole BRICK and SLATED BUILDINGS, CARTS, COUNTING-HOUSE FURTNITURE, &c., BY AUCTION. J. & R. EDMISTON are instructed to Sell as above, the whole Plant, Utensils, and Buildings of the Coatbridge Oilworks, on Tuesday and Wednesday, 13th and 14th April. Catalogues on application. J. & R. EDMISTON, Auctioneers.

      Scotsman, 10th April 1880