The reason we’re here in Uralla this time was to meet up with Kerry Varley, the owner of the old Phoenix Foundry, as she was interested in talking to a blacksmith/Foundryman and getting a bit of an assessment of what may be of historic value and what may be junk left behind be various former owners.
Kerry is a retired Theatre Nurse with a passion to preserve the technology as a museum for folk a hundred years hence…. To that end, she is keen to establish a sort of “Friends of Phoenix” group of Foundrymen, Engineers, Blacksmiths, Steam Buffs etc ( current or retired) to help with the organising of the place , the upkeep and restoration of same and most urgently the patching of some serious leaks in the rambling timber and tin structure.
This foundry has a collections of the original architectural cast iron lace that they sent to the Sydney market, along with the old smelting cupola.. the crucible and pouring gantry, the mould ovens, belt driven machinery, the old stem engine to drive them, a fully functioning blacksmith shop with numerous tools , swages and dies, power hammer (ont so ancient !)… A veritable treasure trove of historical metal that has to be seen to be believed!…. I have loved this place since I first saw it about fifteen years ago and fantasised being young and frisky and owning it.
So if you are interested in being a friend of the Old Phoenix Foundry, perhaps you could email me and I may be able to put you in touch with Kerry.