Matthew Murray, engineer. Among other machines, Murray built the world's first commercially successful steam locomotive. This entered service at the Middleton Colliery near Leeds in 1812.
Image: Science Museum/SSPL

Competition

Matthew Murray (1765-1826) was Boulton and Watt's main rival. Murray began business in 1795, and produced better work than Boulton and Watt's Soho Foundry.

Murray used innovative machine tools, which were kept secret, to manufacture steam engines. An ex-employee recalled one of them in 1802:

'The machine was not patented, and... was kept... locked up in a small room by itself, to which the ordinary workmen could not gain access.'

How did Boulton and Watt compete with Murray?