W.H. Kane & Co.

Biography/History

The firm was founded by Kane Bros of Ballymena in 1896 and managed by William Hugh Kane to whom the company was passed c. 1900. It operated from three local sites: Larne Foundry, Ballylornan Foundry (or Inver Engineering Works) and Rock Works. During World War I the firm serviced minesweepers and steam trawlers. A boom period after the war was followed by a depression and subsequent revival by 1935. During World War II naval patrol craft were serviced. Subsequently strong links were forged with business interests all over Ulster, in Ireland and England: castings for farm and textile machinery were produced, and quarry plant. An upturn in business was created by the arrival in Larne of Associated Electrical Industries Ltd (later GEC). The foundry closed in 1981 and until the firm's takeover and closure in 1986 by Larne Paper Mill it operated as a general engineering servicing company.