A lethal innovation

We are glad to note that in spite of the troubled times, or perhaps because they have emphasised new wants, an industry has been built up in Lancashire that promises to become a large one in the future.

We refer to the manufacture of plain and corrugated roofing coverings under the name of Everite and Asbestile, one made in corrugated form and the other in flat sheets similar to slates.

Such a material was invented about 20 years ago, the finished article being imported into this country from Switzerland by Messr Felber, Jucker & Co, but works have now been established in Lancashire, at Bold, near Widnes. The process of manufacture has been improved with the result that the fault of lamination, which is a tendency to peel, no longer exists. The company manufacturing the tiles is the British Everite and Asbestile Works, which is connected with similar enterprises in Switzerland, France and Australia.

The composition of the tiles is asbestos and Portland cement, and as the basis is asbestos, the tiles are fireproof and proof against the destructive influence of atmosphere impregnated with chemical and acid fumes. Sheets little thicker than a sheet of zinc, were jumped on without any apparent damage. It does not expand or contract with changes of temperature and becomes harder by wetting.

Its tensile strength has been proved by severe tests, a 42in wide Everite sheet being laid on purlins spaced 2ft 6in apart with the weight concentrated on an area of 28ft supported a weight of 800Ib without showing any indications of cracking.