THE NAYLOR family includes generations of brick makers, railway contractors and drainage clay pipe specialists who have played an important role not only locally in the Penistone, Denby Dale and Cawthorne area, but worldwide.
The long established pipe making business Naylor’s was founded by Wilfred Naylor, the eldest of the sixth generation of brick makers and still operates from the successful Cawthorne site among other bases.
He was born the eldest of the sixth generation of brick makers of nearby Scholes, which dated back to Daniel Naylor in the 1730s.
The Naylor Pipes Business became a leader in drainage products.
Meanwhile Naylor’s the family company set up by Daniel Naylor in the 1730s had moved into engineering, railway and construction work.
The most well-known feat was the building of Denby Dale railway viaduct which sits majestically across a valley, and was built by George William Naylor, his father.
Wilfred was well aware of the drama and activities of the construction business. He was taken to see construction work on the new Denby Dale railway viaduct, which had been started when he was only eight.
The contract had been awarded to the newly-formed partnership of Naylor Brothers, Contractors, comprising his father, George William, (then aged 30) and his uncle Thompson (aged 22). George William oversaw much of the work.
The price tendered in 1857 had been £27,650 for completion within two and a half years. The viaduct was to replace the trestle construction, which looked like something from the Wild West.
Despite many difficulties, including ground subsidence, the last stone arch was keyed after two years.
The family gathered with great pride at the opening of the viaduct and railway line on Whitsunday, May 16, 1880, George Wilfred joining the family at the celebration.
The contract lost money and the great railway boom was drawing to a close but the reputation of Naylor Brothers Contractors remained high. They had never failed to complete a job on time and went on to undertake many more large civil engineering contracts over a wide area including providing the filter-tiles in for the Barnsley Sewage Treatment Works in 1907.
The family moved from Scholes to Denby Dale and in 1881 George William built the large stone house (Woodbine) overlooking the viaduct.