No material from the Dixon Papers listed here may be published without the written permission of the depositors
Immediate source of acquisition:
Deposited in Grimsby Borough Archives Office in December 1972
Administrative / biographical background:
Peter Dixon was a Scot who began making paper in 1866. The firm was founded for his son Joseph (died 1927) in 1871 at Spring Grove, Oughtibridge, Sheffield (Yorks). A second mill was built at West Marsh, Grimsby, in 1904; the mill was opened by Lord Northcliffe and the first paper was made on 20 July 1906. The mill was subsequently extended and at one time employed 800 workers. It was probably the only privately owned newsprint mill in the country; it produced other papers as well and exported all over the world. Joseph Dixon had three sons in the business, William, Oscar and Cuthbert, besides grandsons who also became directors. Oscar (1883-1946) managed the Grimsby mill from its opening. After failing to agree terms locally with the Great Central Railway in 1926 the company opened a wood-pulp plant in Finland instead. In 1958 the firm became public as P. Dixon and Son (Holdings) Ltd. Following a severe fire and difficult trading conditions the West Marsh mill closed in 1973. It was probably the town's largest industry not based on fish.
Other firms in the group in the 1970s were Bronco Ltd., Duffin Containers Ltd., O.Y. Toppila (Oulu, Finland), P. Dixon and Son Steamship Company, and A.E. Berry and Son Ltd., shipping agents. There was a HQ in Fleet Street (London), a china clay mine in Cornwall, and a polythene factory in Taplow (Berks). Although the mill lost money at its end the sale of the company's assets in Grimsby and Finland realised about £7 million