At one time this was all open grazing land. Samuel Symington, son of "Soup" Wm. Symington, started buying up land. Development was the aim. The Land Society bought land to lay out Gladstone St, Granville St, Cross St and Bath St. The Newcombe brothers bought land from Samuel Symington to lay out Nithsdale Ave, Caxton St, Clipston St and Lathkill St. Retail shops were erected as part of this new suburb. Industry was encouraged to employ the people who lived there. On Bath Street the Steam Laundry was built in 1900. On Lathkill St. the Northampton firm of Pratt built a shoe factory, now redeveloped as Furlong something. Who wants to live in Pratts Close? The shoe factory was started in 1898 and was built to the design of Morley and Anderson of Northampton. No extensions were made to this factory and it eventually became part of the social club for employees of Tungstone Products next door.

Caxton Street was named after the next factory to be built. The Type Works. The Haddon family of Naseby and Clipston had a manufactory in Bouverie St, London, near the newspaper printers and wanted to set up a branch factory here to make printers type. Walter Haddon, then aged 34, came up to run the works. The original building was dated 1898, followed the next year by a foundry extension and a chimney. A woodworking department extension was added in 1904. This was built probably by Thos Hickman & Co. as their 1903 northlighted design had been reworked by the companies architect, one R F Beaumorn of Nutfield, Redhill, Surrey. His design was approved in 1904. Hickman's, the builders, were based in Caxton St at that time in a similar single storey northlighted factory, which Itself has been redeveloped to housing. At about this time the type works were called Caxton Foundry (after the English master printer of that name.) Money for building houses ran out and the decision was taken not to build housing on Clipston St. It has been "rough road" ever since to the locals. Here was the car park and cycle sheds for the workers. This has been developed as "The Shires" with parking on Clipston St. The firm had workers rentable housing built on Lathkill St numbers 15-39 (Caxton Terrace). One commentator says they had the shop and 12 houses on Bath St built for them. George Abbott was certainly the developer who submitted in 1900 the plans for these.

The principal ingredient of typeface for printers is molten lead poured into a mould to form the letter, which the printer's compositor then sets up in a frame for the printing press. The Caxton Works became world famous and even produced a font called Harborough. This is no longer seen and is not one of Microsoft's approved styles. The woodworking department made the moulds for the type and the drawers and tables for storing and using the type. Another product was brass printers rules which are still made for Metal Woods a Harborough Company. Further extensions to the works were approved between 1925 and 1930. Eventually the trade in typeface declined and Tungstone Products was the main function of the factory. Their main line of trade was batteries which rely heavily on a lead core to stop battery acid escaping. There is a well known photograph of Tungstone's publicity van built like a car battery. This was published in Around Mkt Harboro in Old Photographs. Stef Mastoris, Sutton 1989. The woodworking shop diversified into beehives and wireless cabinets.

That part of Lathkill Street which runs up from Northampton Road to the corner was originally called Occupation Road on plans because it was the access road to the fields of what is now the Southern Estate. Lathkill was intended as the name for that part of the road which crosses Bath St to Granville St. The name comes from one of the favourite haunts of Samuel Symington and is where he is reputed to have enjoyed many hours fishing in Lathkill Dale, Derbyshire, where he owned an estate at Over Haddon, near Bakewell.

More information is available in the Market Harborough Museum where they have files on Tungstone and the Haddon family.

Bob Hakewill