Benjamin Ladds was born December 17th 1868. When he was 23 years old he had a factory built at 33/35 Moor Road, Rushden, Northamptonshire. The Factory was called ‘Ladds Shoe Manufacturers’. Benjamin Ladds married in 1894 to Ida E Selby, daughter of the late James Selby, of Oakham, Rutland. With Ida he had two sons and three daughters. When he married he was approx 26 years old, and was son of John Ladds.
Benjamin lived in the house next-door (to the factory) which was called ‘Bournvilla’. The house and the factory were built in 1891. The house had a small passage that led from the second floor of the house to the second floor of the factory. The front door of the factory was eight feet high, not like normal doors. Earlier this year about Feb/Mar the factory caught on fire. No one knows how it caught alight but it burnt very well; the house didn’t catch alight but parts of the factory had to be pulled down because it was dangerous, such as the triangular piece of roof over the top bay window, and parts of the walls had to be pulled down at the back too. Now the house and factory have been pulled down altogether. The land is due for redevelopment of flats for old people.
I have an office chair found in Ladds' car park, and my uncle had the five stained glass windows from the first floor windows of the factory.