Glassworks in new book launched at Sandwell Community History and Archives

By Megan Archer | Sandwell | Sandwell entertainment | Published:

A new book highlighting the work of Chance Brothers Glassworks has been launched at Sandwell Community History and Archives.

Geoff, Henry Chance and Brendan

The result of a year-long project by local artists Brendan Jackson and Geoff Broadway, ‘Keepers of the Light’ takes a look the iconic lighthouse at Portland Bill in Dorset and the site of its original production, Chance Brothers Glassworks in Smethwick.

Using a range of sources including oral histories, news cuttings, archive records, personal reminisces, photography and film fragments, the project shares the connective history and significance of these places.

The authors launched the book at the archives service at Smethwick Library, along with a showing of an accompanying short film, on Tuesday, October 1.

Geoff, Henry Chance and Brendan

The project has also produced a heritage map of the area of the Chance Glassworks site which is available at Smethwick Library and Smethwick Heritage Centre.

Brendan Jackson said: "During childhood holidays in Dorset, I visited the Portland Bill lighthouse, never realising at the time it was made in Smethwick, just down the road from where I was born.

"It's an iconic landmark, the most visited lighthouse in the UK, a lasting testament to the skills and invention of the glassworkers of Chance Brothers."

Supported by Arts Council England, the project has been in partnership with CHAS, Smethwick Heritage Centre and Chance Glassworks Heritage Trust.

Megan Archer

By Megan Archer
Chief Reporter - @MeganA_Star

Chief Reporter with the Express & Star. Give me a call on 01902 319363 or email


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