Matthew Boulton's Soho Manufactory in 1800. This giant building concentrated Boulton's eight different business ventures on one site.
Image: Science Museum/SSPL

The Soho Manufactory

Matthew Boulton was principally a manufacturer of small metal goods. In 1761 he decided to put his entire business under one roof.

When Boulton's Soho Manufactory opened in 1762, it was very different to the network of independent merchants and producers around at the time. By 1765 Soho employed 400 workers and was quickly becoming one of the industrial wonders of the world.