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The Company was founded over 150 years ago when, upon the death of her husband in 1851, Eliza Tinsley decided to take over the running of the business (despite having five children under the age of eleven!!). She moved the business to Cradley Heath in 1853 and became known locally as 'the widow'.

Over the next twenty years she built a reputation as a fair and knowledgeable businesswoman and the business thrived, becoming the largest of its kind in the area. In fact, according to the National Census of 1871 around 4,000 people were employed by Eliza Tinsley, many of them outworkers living in the chainmakers cottages so prominent throughout the region. They would visit the site once a week to collect materials and then would return the following week with finished product forged in their own outhouses.

Eliza retired in 1872 and the business was taken over by four partners including Mr G. Harry Green, a former sales representative of the Company.

Eliza died at home in April 1882 aged 68 and G. H. Green bought out his partners at around this time. The Company stayed in private hands until it became part of a PLC. It was then acquired by the Atlantic Group in 2006.

© Eliza Tinsley 2009