Probus club enjoys interesting talk about the history of the gypsum industry
THE usual club business preceded a good lunch and then Probus Club members settled down to hear speaker Noel Worley, who spoke about the history of the gypsum industry in the Midlands.
Mr Worley spent 35 years of his working life in the gypsum industry.
Gypsum or calcium sulphate is a mined mineral which is full of water but when dried it becomes plaster or alabaster. There are several mines left in Britain producing 1-1.5 million tonnes of gypsum per annum.
Our closest mines are at East Leake and Barrow upon Soar. Originally there were dozens of mines independently owned but now most mines come under the umbrella of British Gypsum who have subsequently been taken over by Siniat of Belgium.
One of the by-produts of gypsum is a very material called Carlyte which is initially a soluble paste-like substance which, when moulded and dried, becomes extremely hard and durable. It has been used as ornamental decoration for church porches and interior mouldings in houses.
After a very interesting talk our president, Pat Harris, thanked Mr Worley and the members showed their appreciation.
We were then reminded that the next meeting is on November 6, at Junction 23 Restaurant where new members are always welcome.
Please contact our secretary Wilf Shenton on 01509 769802 for further details.