Photographers were banned from inside new asbestos factory

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The Press was banned from taking photographs inside a new asbestos cement factory which opened in Ballyclare in September 1967.

Ninety guests including Ministry of Commerce officials, cross-channel representatives of Turner’s and members of Ballyclare Urban Council toured the new Turner and Newall facility.

However, Press photographers were “confined to outside shots and pictures of the opening ceremony”, according to the report.

Chairman Ralph Bateman said: “The boom in redevelopment in Ulster was one of the decisive factors in bringing the factory to Northern Ireland.

He indicated that the Turner group has been a “major supplier of materials used in building and engineering development in the province” but “cross-channel transportation was a financial burden on such an operation”.

The factory, the first of its kindin Northern Ireland, employed 40 workers but it was anticipated that this would increase to 125.

Asbestos roofing sheets and pipes were to be manufactured at the Hillhead Road plant.