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Edward Street, Saltaire

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Edward Salt (1837 – 1903) was the third son of Saltaire’s founder Titus Salt. One of the reasons why Titus Salt consolidated his textile empire in Saltaire was to provide occupation for his several sons. In filling his role Edward was to be the family member having the longest association (about 40 years) with Salts Mill.

Following a privileged education at Mill Hill School in London, Edward entered the family business. In 1861 Edward (24) married Mary Jane Susan Elgood (20), a cousin of his sister-in-law Emma Dove Salt. The young couple set up home at Ferniehurst, a newly built, lavish mansion (now demolished) which stood on the north side of the Aire Valley, about half a mile from the mill. Sadly, Mary Jane died days before her 30th birthday, in 1870. The following year Edward married Sarah Amelia Rouse, the adopted daughter of one of Sir Titus’ business associates.

Over the next two decades the Salt family’s involvement in the mill diminished, as deaths and retirements took their toll. By 1890 Edward was the only family member left as a partner in the business.

Disaster struck in 1892, when the business went into liquidation. Edward, who had earlier mortgaged Ferniehurst in a vain attempt to fend off the mill’s financial troubles, lost his home. He and his wife Sarah Amelia moved to Bathampton, near Bath, where Edward quietly lived out his life, dying of pneumonia in 1903. His grave can be seen in the graveyard of St Nicholas’, the Parish church of Bathampton, in a beautiful setting alongside the Kennet and Avon Canal.

© Barlo & Shaw


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