Grimsby Ice Factory on Europe's "most at risk" list

The Grimsby Ice Factory in England has been marked as one of the seven most threatened heritage sites in Europe for 2018.

Grimsby Ice Factory is a former ice factory located in Grimsby, England. It was constructed from 1898–1901 to provide crushed ice to preserve fish stored in ships at Grimsby's seaport, which is said to have hosted the world’s biggest fishing fleet in the 1950s. The Grimsby Ice Factory, which produced up to 1,200 tons of ice every day at its peak, closed in 1990 and has stood derelict in Grimsby docks ever since. The roof is now severely damaged, allowing water to enter the interior, and much of its metal work and electrical fittings have been stolen. There have also been threats of demolition.


The 4,350 square metre building was built with an attention to detail worthy of the best Victorian industrial architecture. It still contains four massive, 80-year-old, 250 rpm four-cylinder, J&E Hall ammonia compressors installed in the 1930s, which supplied four ice tanks. They replaced the original four 50 rpm steam-driven Pontifex horizontal double-acting ammonia compressors. They have been described as "the sole surviving example of this type of equipment".

© Flickr

Efforts to save the historic Grimsby Ice Factory have been thrown a major lifeline by being named as one of the most endangered heritage sites in Europe. Europa Nostra, the leading heritage organization in Europe, and the European Investment Bank Institute have included the Grimsby Ice Factory in its seven most threatened heritage sites in Europe for 2018. The Ice Factory shares the list with post-Byzantine churches in Voskopoja and Vithkuqi in Albania, the historic centre of Vienna, the Buzludzha monument in Bulgaria, the David Gareji monasteries and hermitage in Georgia, the Constanta Casino in Romania and the Prinkipo Greek Orphanage on Princes’ Islands in Turkey.

The 6 other monuments listed, located in Albania, Austria, Bulgaria, Georgia, Romania and Turkey © IIR

For further information, see also the webpage dedicated to Grimsby Ice Factory, and the website of the program conducted by Europa Nostra, and more sources following the links below.