Nostalgic photographs show the factory that was once Swindon's biggest employer.

For decades, the Pressed Steel Company Ltd stood tall over the Greenbridge route near the bridge that connects Bridge End Road to Gipsy Lane.

The business was founded in Crowley in 1926 and these images from Swindon Libraries' Local Studies team show its big move to Swindon.

In 1954, Pressed Steel bought Parsonage Farm in Stratton St Margaret on the northeastern edge of the town.  By the end of 1955, the first two presses were in operation.

Work on a second press shop began in 1957, and by 1965, with more than 6,000 people working on the site, Pressed Steel had become Swindon’s largest employer.

In 1965, Pressed Steel was bought by the British Motor Corporation, known from 1966 as British Motor Holdings, then - from 1968 - as the British Leyland Motor Corporation, BL, and, ultimately, the Rover Group.

Swindon Advertiser: The Pressed Steel Company in Swindon in the 1950sThe Pressed Steel Company in Swindon in the 1950s (Image: Swindon Libraries Local Studies)

After buying the Rover Group in 1994, BMW retained ownership of the former Pressed Steel plants in both Swindon and Cowley.

Today the Swindon plant produces most of the body pressings and sub-assemblies for the BMW MINI.

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