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AIMS - to research, publish and promote the industrial history of the London Borough of Greenwich

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  • 03/12/14--04:33: Greenwich Wharves 1950

    This document is undated but from internal evidence it is from after the nationalisation of gas and before the arrival of the Cutty Sark in Greenwich - ie 1949-1951

    The original layout is in 6 columns - and Blogger is very unforgiving about any sort of layout.  The wharves are listed on the left hand side and the blue text describes installations or conditions in the river at that point.  (Please don't say I should have done it as a PDF which Blogger hates even more)

    It is obviously in order from west to east  - and spot the onlyttwo survivors of all these companies - and, note, one has just put in a planning application to continue working here - the other renewed some few years ago.  The Yacht Club is of course still there but on a different site.

    ROYAL NAVAL COLLEGE, GREENWICH            5 miles to London Bridge

    Paper Stock Merchants 11-13, Crane Street, East Greenwich, S.E.1O R.Moss and SONS GREenwich 0087

    Dunnett's Moorings

    Boat Moorings Greenwich Boat House, Crane Street, Greenwich, S.E.10
    CORBETT and ; SON  GREenwich 0860


    ALPHA TOWING CO. LTD. OFFICE                                         
    1-3, Highbridge Wharf, Eastney Street, Greenwich, S.E.10 GREenwich 3801: 3534     
    Towage Contractors                                                       
                                                           GREENWICH REACH

    HIGHBRIDGE WHARF,  Eastney Street, Greenwich, S.E.10
    GRIFFITH and Co. LTD Warehousemen, Lightermen and Hauliers Griffith-GREenwich 1301/1373
    W. H. DONOVAN and Co. LTD Barge Repairs Donovan-GREenwich 1143


    GREENWICH POWER STATION, Electricity Power for Transport, Hoskins Street, S.E.lO


    ANCHOR IRON WHARF, Scrap Iron and Metal Merchants Lassell Street, Greenwich, S.E.10

    C.  A. ROBINSON and Co. GREenwich 3103


    UNION WHARF, General Wharfingers, Pelton Road, East Greenwich, S.E.10
    . SHAW LOVELL and SONS LTD. GREenwich 3381

    East Greenwich Tier

    LOVELL'S WHARF, General Wharfingers, Pelton Road, East Greenwich, S.E.10

    C, SHAW LOVELL and ; SONS LTD GREenwich 3381                                                 

    Griffith's Buoy
    Waddles Buoy

    GREENWICH WHARF, Pelton Road, East Greenwich, S.E.10 C. SHAW LOVELL and  SONS LTD.
    GREenwich 3381 General Wharfingers
    GRANITE WHARF Cadet Place, Banning Street, S.E.1O OVENELL and NELAN LTD.
    Barge and Tug Repairs. Barge Berths GREenwich 3031
    GRANITE WHARF Banning Street, Greenwich, S.E.10 GEO. WIMPEY and Co. LTD GREenwich 0188/0344
    Manufacturers of Road Surfacing Materials
    Tilbury Dredging,Contracting  and Dredging Co's Private Moorings  (Providence Buoy)

    BADCOCK'S WHARF, GREENWICH 79, Banning Street, Greenwich, S.E.10 D. BADCOCK (WHARVES) LTD.
    GREenwich 3401 Wharfingers, Warehousemen Hauliers and Packers
    1st Cubitt Town Barge Tier
    White Flashing Light  (William Cubitt's Town Roads)

    DAWSON'S WHARF Christchurch Way, Greenwich, S.E.1T. SCHOLEY and Co. (THAMES) LTD.
    GREenwich 0061 Licensed Lightermen and Barge Owners
    Frontage used by Pipers for Barge Repairs      

    Barge Berths and gridiron
    Piper's Moorings
    PIPER'S WHARF Christchurch Way, Greenwich, S.E.10 J.   R. PIPER LTD.
    GREenwich 0061   Barge Repairers    
    Barge Berths and gridiron                                                               

                                                                        BLACKWALL REACH
    Submarine and Power Cable Manufacturers
    GREenwich 3291 (Wharf Ext. 118)  

    TUNNEL WHARF Tunnel Avenue Depot, East Greenwich, S.E.1O GREENWICH BOROUGH COUNCIL
    Rubbish Disposal GREenwich 3781

    TUNNEL GLUCOSE WHARF  Thames Bank House, Tunnel Avenue, S.E.10 GREenwich 3033
    SE REFINERIES LTD. Glucose Manufacturers. Frontage not used.

    FISHER'S REPAIR YARD Morden Wharf Road, Greenwich, S.E.IO W.J. WOODWARD FISHER
    Tug and Barge Repairs  GREenwich 2436                                         

    Barge Berths
    Flat Foreshore
    HOLLICK'S WHARF Tunnel Avenue, Greenwich, S.E.1O C.M.C. Co. LTD. Unloading Cement
    GREenwich 0088

     2ND Cubitt Town Barge Tier

    General Wharfingers GREenwich 1167


     Fishers Moorings

    Wharfingers and Warehousemen GREenwich 2741

    FISHER'S TUG ANDLIGHTERAGE OFFICE Molassine Wharf, Tunnel Avenue, S.E.lO

    W. J. WOODWARD FISHER GREenwich 2751                               

    Fisher's Moorings
    J.W.Cooks's Folly Barge Moorings

    MOLASSINE WHARF Tunnel Avenue, S.E.10 MOLASSINE MEAL CO. LTD. Manufacturers of Cattle Foods and Dog Biscuits
    GREenwich 1351                                                

    Fishers Moorings

    HUMPHERY ANDGREY (LTGE.) LTD. GREenwich 0393                                                 
    Barge and Tug Repairers and Builders Manufacturer and Servicing of Tarpualins 

    Tug and Barge Slipway

     1st Blackwall Barge Tier (Harrison's Blackwall Roads)

    GREenwich 0872 Storage of all types 

    2nd Blackwall Barge Tier (Mercantile Lighterage Folly House Roads)
                                          BLACKWALL REACH
    GREenwich 3767 Saw Mills

    1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th Folly House  Barge Tiers  (Union Lighterage Folly House Roads)


    GREenwich 1127 Motor Spirit
    GREenwich 4441 Road Contractors and Wharfingers
    DELTA WHARF Delta Works, East Greenwich, S.E.10 DELTA METAL CO. LTD.
    GREenwich 0123  Metal Manufacturers and Engineers

    J.P.Knight's Tug Moorings


    POINT WHARF Tunnel Avenue, S.E.10 THOMAS W. HUGHAN andCO. (A. G. HULL)
    GREenwich 0654 and 4589 Barge Builders and Repairers.. Marine Engineers 
    Floating Dock and Barge Gridiron
    Space allowed for bend in River and Wharves on North Shore opposite Blackwall Point. S.E.G.B. property; extends from Blackwall Point Generating Station (Plaistow Wharf on North Shore is opposite) to Point Wharf (Gun Tavern on North Shore is opposite)


    wich 3331  Tar Works 


    Space allowed for bend in River and Wharves on North side opposite Blackwall Point S.E.G.B. property extends from Blackwall
    Point Generating Station (Plaistow Wharf on North Shore is opposite) to Point Wharf (Gun Tavern on North Shore is opposite)

     J.W. Cook's Orchard Buoy Barge Moorings
     Union Lighterage Old Roads Barge Moorings

     Trinity House Tier (2)

    EAST GREENWICH GAS WHARF  Grenfell Street, Greenwich, S.E.lO          .

    SOUTH EASTERN GAS BOARD  GREenwich 3331  Gas Manufacture
    1st Victoria Dock Barge Roads (Victoria Dock Buoy or Odham's Buoy)

    EAST GREENWICH GAS JETTY Grenfell Street, Greenwich, S.E.lO
    UTH EASTERN GAS BOARD GREenwich 3331  Gas Manufacture 
     2nd Victoria Dock Barge Roads (Humphery and Grey's Roads)

    EAST GREENWICH GAS WHARF Grenfell Street, Greenwich, S.E.10
    ASTERN GAS BOARD Greenwich 3331 Gas Manufacture

    wich 3331  Chemical Works
    S.E.G.B. Roads

    Plaistow Upper Tier ('Walker's Roads)

    Cory's Roads

    BRITISH ELECTRICTY AUTHORITY Electricity Power Station
    Plaistow Lower Tier (Vokins Plaistow Buoy)
    Plaistow 1st Barge Roads (Silvertown Services Roads)
    REDPATH BROWN'S Riverside Works, River Way, Greenwich, S.E.10
    WN and Co. LTD.  GREenwich 2671 Steel Structural Engineers
    Plaistow 2nd Barge Roads (Silvertown Services Roads)
    Plaistow Barge Tier (Silvertown Services Roads)
    DORMAN LONG'S (BRIDGE DEPT.) Dorman Jetty, Bugsbys Hole, S.E.lO
    DORMAN LONG and CO. LTD. GREenwich 0921 Bridge Constructional Engineers
    Vokins Plaistow Barge Moorings

    NORTON'S CHARLTON Bugsby's Hole, Greenwich, S.E.IO

    R.NORTON GREenwich 2428 Barge Repairers
    Cory's Atlas Roads (7)
    PEARTREE WHARF Bugsby's Hole, Greenwich, S.E.lO G. J. PALMER and SONS EAST 1818 (Slipway Wharf)
    Barge and Tug Repairs


    GREenwich 3865 Spirit and Kerosene

    Bugsby's Hole  1st Barge Roads

    ANGERSTEIN'S WHARF Angersteins Wharf, Charlton, S.E.7 BRITISH RAILWAYS

    GREenwich 0064  All Classes of General Merchandise to and from barges to rail and certain classes of goods from ship to rail such as Coal, Oil, Ferrtilisers, etc.

    Angerstein's Buoy

    Bugsby's Reach Petroleum Halt (Angerstein's Spirit Buoy)

    Bugsby's Hole 2nd Barge Roads (Angerstein's Buoy)

    Cory's Upper Woods Buoy

    Silvertown Services Moorings

    (White Flashing Light)

    SHELL MEX and B.P. LTD. GREenwich 3391 Petroleum Products

    CHRISTIE'S WHARF Charlton, S.E.7
    CHRISTIE and 
    VESEY LTD. GREenwich 3784 Timber Importers

    G. A. HARVEY'S SLIPWAY Riverside, Charlton, S.E.7 G. A. HARVEY AND Co. (LONDON) LTD.

    GREenwich 3232 Site for launching Tanks, etc.

    Mercantile Roads

    Barge repair berths

    GREenwich 1079  Barge and Tug Repairs

    Cory's Roads

    1st Prince Regent Barge Tier

    CORY'S REPAIR YARD, CHARLTON Riverside, Charlton, S.E.7

    WM. CORY and SON LTD. GREenwich 1232 Repair Yard and Slip

    CORY'S PIER, CHARLTON Riverside, Charlton, S.E.7
    SON LTD.  Lighterage and Tug Headquarters
    GREenwich 1232

    CORY'S CHARL TON STORES Riverside, Charlton, S.E.7

    WM. CORY and ; SON LTD. GREenwich 1232  Stores Dept

    CHARLTON WHARF Anchor and Hope Lane, Charlton, S.E 7
    . H. PEARCE LTD. GREenwich 1108 Lighterage Cartage and Wharfage Contractors

    Cory's Tug Moorings and Coal Hulk

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    In the early 20th century the great Penn works on Blackheath Hill was taken over by Thames Ironworks - the shipbuilders based on Bow Creek, who built the Warrior and many other important ships.  They used the Penn site to build steam motor vehicles. The following piece describes one of these.
    Please note - this piece has been scanned from a photocopy handed to us, the source of which is not known and which has no identifying features.  If it is your copyright - or you know whose copyright it is - please let us know.  If it is, it can be removed from this site at once or a credit given.   Even better would be more information and maybe the picture which clearly once accompanied this.
    "This is a five ton design of wagon designe'To comply fully with the requirements of the Heavy Motor Car Order.' Unlike many designers of the period the Thames wagon had the undertype compound engine with cylinders 3.7/8"& 6 ½ "x 6"set across the frame and with the two crankshaft pinions engageable with the spur ring on a counter- shaft. This countershaft was extended outside the oil-tight casing to the bevel driven differential gear on the back axle, the bevels giving a reduction of 1 :4·6. At 450 r. p mthe engine developed 30 b. h. p. Both cylinders had normal slide valves and the crankshaft was 2 1/4"diameter.

    "Steam was generated in a locomotive type boiler containing 32 tubes 1 3/4"dia. the heating surface totalling 50 sq. ft with a grate area of 3 sq. ft.   The exhaust steam was passed through the ash pan to deposit any moisture in suspension and then through a heating coil in the smoke box. This was to render the exhaust practically invisible".

    "Standard channels 6"x 2 ½”  were used for the chassis framing and cross braced. Rear main springs were 'four feet long with secondary springs above them two feet long permitting a large movement but well damped. The fore-carriage mounting the front axle was in effect a rectangular frame pivoted at its centre thus providing three- point suspension. Steel wheels 3' 2" dia x 9 1/2" tread were used for the rear and 2' 911 dia. x 5 1/2"tread for the front on a wheelbase of 10'3". "

    "Other main features were an external contracting brake on the spur ring on the countershaft, wood block brakes on the rear wheels and a water tank holding 120 gallons mounted beneath the rear end of the framing. The unladen weight of the five-tonner was 4 T 10 cwt and four to five hundredweights of fuel were carried. If desired an extra two or three tons could be taken on a trailer."


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    On 15th March, in superb spring weather, a splendid two hour organized walk took place round the estate. There was scant publicity but an embarrassing number of people turned up - from as far afield as Scotland. Despite much press publicity about bulldozing, it turned out that almost no prefabs have actually been demolished, so far.  Areas have been cleared of their occupants and groups of empty prefabs are now hidden behind black hoardings, but they are almost all still there.

    On this estate there were two types of prefabs and six, in the most original condition, have been listed grade II. Lewisham Council have complained that English Heritage is irresponsible. The Excalibar estate is in poor condition and the land is urgently required to build new homes for needy and deserving people.

    Some residents love their prefabs; they remember the old slogan - popular at the time prefabs were built -  'an Englishman's home is his castle' and are determined to stay. The Estate still has a bit of its old secluded atmosphere. It is relatively traffic free and as well as roads, pedestrian walkways run between some of the bungalows. Pay a visit while you still can. A prefab museum has been opened at17 Meliot Road SE6.See:

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    This is the prospectus for a Deptford Pier Company set up in 1830 - as you will see - a lot of it might sound familiar - and the people involved have all got quite a bit of 'previous'  and - er- interests in the Greenwich Railway. Please look at the last couple of paragraphs for all the wonderful things they intend to build, having cleared away some unsightly dwellings.

    The prospectus of this Company, incorporated by Act of Parliament, 5th William IV., cap. 13, as follows: --
    The public utility and necessity of the Deptford Pier Company will at once be conceded by those who consider the immense and daily increasing number of steam vessels, which at every hour of the day navigate the crowded surface of the Thames, occasioning serious damage to other vessels, as well as considerable injury to themselves, and continually accompanied with fatal and distressing accidents.
    The grounds on which Parliament have sanctioned the Act of Incorporation now obtained will at once be understood by reference to the preamble, which was duly proved in evidence before a Committee of the House of Commons ...
     "that the conveyance of passengers and goods to and from the Metropolis by steam and other vessels has of late years very much increased and that such communications would be greatly facilitated if means were afforded for landing such passengers and goods at Deptford by the erection of a pier; and that the danger attending the navigation of the river Thames between Deptford and London Bridge occasioned by steamboats would be hereby avoided, whilst a ready and convenient communication with the metropolis could be maintained by means of the Greenwich and London Railway now erecting."  
    The site now chosen for the formation of a pier presents advantages peculiar to this locality. In addition to the commodious bay-like form of the river at this part, here is a depth of water of 15 feet, even at the lowest ebb, close to the shore, thus enabling the Company to afford every facility of landing and embarking without the necessity for a projecting pier. That which peculiarly renders Deptford the spot to which steamers may be expected to resort, results from its being the nearest point of the river to the metropolis, which can be approached without encountering the danger arising from the great number of vessels in the pool; whilst the London and Greenwich Railway presents a medium of communication with the very centre of the metropolis, which cannot, in all probability be elsewhere obtained.  
    The city authorities have evinced their approbation of the undertaking by granting to the company a. considerable addition to the river frontage which will greatly increase the future value of the water-side premises.  It is the intention of the company to form a wharf or terrace of 700 feet in length, with sufficient depth of water for steamers to lie alongside at all times of tide. The company propose also to erect warehouses for merchandise, &c so as to enable vessels to discharge their cargoes without the expense and hazard of lighterage.  Proper arrangements with the Customs Department will also be made so as to render every facility to passengers in foreign steam vessels.  
    The pier at Deptford being nearly equidistant from the City and West End of the Metropolis, affords the most convenient access to every part of London. For passengers going to the West End, conveyance will be provided at moderate rates, affording accommodation to various points between Lambeth, Vauxhall, Pimlico, and the extreme western limits of London; and also forming a direct communication through Peckham and Camberwell to Hyde Park Corner, over Vauxhall Bridge. through which densely populated district there has hitherto been no public conveyance; and it may be confidently asserted, that less time will be occupied in reaching the West End of London by landing at the Deptford Pier, than is now consumed between Deptford and the Custom House, steamboats usually taking three-quarters of an hour to navigate that dangerous portion of the river, the whole of which time will  be gained to the passenger, as he will probably have reached his destination in the time occupied in navigating the Pool.
    Passengers to the City, or to the Surrey side of the river, will be provided with an expeditious and cheap medium of conveyance over the London and Greenwich Railway which adjoins the leading avenue to the pier, and will afford an immediateconveyance of four-fifths of the time usually consumed between Deptford and the Custom House through the Pool. 
    In order to convey a just notion of the future success of the Deptford Pier, it is necessary that allusion should be made to several under-takings .now in progress in the immediate neighbourhood, which seem to fall into natural alliance with it. The advantages they offer of extending the utility of the pier will be eagerly embraced by the directors.  Already, the London and Greenwich Railway presents prospect of early completion; leaving London from the bridge, it is brought within a short distance of Deptford Pier, and the directors of the Pier Company will use their utmost exertions to have their works complete In due time to avail themselves of the opening of the railway.
    An Act of Parliament has been obtained for the formation of a railway between Croydon and London, which will join the Greenwich railway at Deptford, and as the projectors of that work contemplate the eventual extension of their line to Brighton, it may be expected that direct communication will be established between the ports of Shoreham and Brighton and the Deptford Pier.  It is in contemplation to convert the towing-path of the Grand Surrey Canal into a tramway, and to continue the same to Vauxhall, for which adequate powers are provided in their existing Acts of Parliament. At Vauxhall, the Southampton 'Railway has already commenced, leading by collateral branches to Bath and Basing, and. from the same depot, the Grand Western Railroad (the Act for which isnow obtained) will also emanate.   
    But leaving for the present any further consideration of the benefits, it is proper to advert to other objects contemplated by the Act of Parliament. The parish of St. Nicholas, Deptford, since the closing of HIs Majesty's Dockyard, has been almost deserted; whole rows of houses are now untenanted or let to casual occupants; and property which in war time yielded considerable revenue to the owners, has fallen into a state bordering on decay and abandonment.  The Company has power to clear so much of this extensive tract as they may deem proper; in so doing, their object will be to substitute a new town, consisting of wide streets, adapted for healthful residence or commercial occupation. The fine gravelly soil abounding in spring- water of the purest quality, at moderate depth is of itself a great recommendation. The streets will lead direct to the water-side, and will form handsome and convenient avenues to the pier; and it can hardly be doubted that the value of this property will be greatly enhanced by these Improvements, and form another source of profit to the Company, as well as to those builders and others who may be inclined to invest their capital in this neighbourhood.  The contemplated hotels, warehouses, &c., will be erected on a scale commensurate with the magnitude of the undertaking.
    The situation will in itself insure considerable casual resort, commanding a fine prospect of the river and surrounding country. Greenwich Hospital, the Park, Blackwall, Woolwich, the East and West India Docks, Deptford Dockyard, the Lower Pool. And even the shipping as far as Erith are all visible from the spot. An extensive promenade, forming- part of the plan, will make it a delightful resort for the inhabitants of Deptford and its neighbourhood.  Builders and others inclined to take part in the contemplated improvements may purchase freehold sites, subject to the requisite conditions. and every information will be furnished, on application to Mr. Horton Ledger, surveyor to the Company.
    The lithographic view published by the company, under the superintendence of their surveyor, will particularly show the character of the waterside elevation of the proposed pier and terrace; whilst. The accompanying plan will give a general idea of the intended approaches.  A commodious temporary landing-place will be provided during the progress of the works, and coaches will at once commence running from the Deptford Pier to the different parts of the Metropolis.  
    The capital of the company is £50,000, in 2,500 shares of £20 each; and the directors Messrs. John Wilson Davis, Richard Edmonds, Adam Gordon, Samuel Gardiner, Henry B. Leeson, Captain Robert Page, George Walter, and Frederick Albert Winsor.   

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  • 03/27/14--02:33: All that was left of it

    The local South London gas company, South Metropolitan, made many appliances - cookers among them.  I would be grateful if someone could confirm, or otherwise, if they were made at their Norman Road works in Greenwich.

    Anyway - the following article comes from the Company's house magazine 'Co-partnership
    Journal' and dates from 1908


    Our picture shows  "Metro. 2'-one that has been returned to the Stores after a career of unsurpassed brilliance. This cooker has been through a conflagration onthe premises in which it was fixed, and, remaining at its post like the hero of Mrs. Hemnns'ballad, has emerged in the condition shown. The cast iron has been melted by the intense heat, which also fused a portion of the slag-wool packing.


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  • 04/03/14--01:11: The Bermondsey Volunteers
  • Neither Greenwich nor Industrial  - but this article is interesting and from the South Met. Gas Co's house magazine Co-partnership Journal in November 1908

    One industrial link - the Col.Bevington mentioned is of course a member of the Bermondsey (and Erith) leather business. Is he the same Bevington whose statue stands in Tooley Street.


    The events following upon the French Revolution led the British Parliament to pass an Act for the enrolment of Volunteers under the official title of 'Armed Associations.' A small but persistent minority in the House of Commons strongly resisted the measure, but Mr. Pitt’s Bill was carried amidst an outburst of popular enthusiasm, and in 1794 -one month after Lord Howe's naval victory over the French-the enrolment of Volunteers began. Bermondsey was the first parish south of the Thames to respond to the Proclamation. As early as 1793'a meeting took place in Bermondsey for the purpose of memorialising the Government to adopt these measures.     .

    Two companies of seventy men each were enrolled under Major-Commandant Gaitskill, and received the title of The Bermondsey Volunteers.'

    A further Proclamation was made in 1798, and this led to the formation of many other corps in the Metropolis and the provincial towns. First among the new enrolments was the Second Bermondsey Corps, known as 'The Bermondsey Loyal Volunteers,' under Captain Thomas Rich. This was followed by the formation of a company in Rotherhithe under Captain John Grice, and by similar companies in Newington, St. George's, Christ Church, and St. Saviour's, Southwark, and also by a company in St. John, Horselydown. Some of these, by the terms of enrolment, were to serve only in their own and the adjoining parishes, but the First Bermondsey Corps volunteered to be associated with the Militia to go to any part of the southern counties, and, if called upon, to garrison towns on the south coast.

    The uniform of the Volunteers in the Metropolis was almost the same in every district, and only varied in the colour of the facings. This consisted of a coat cut away to show the waistcoat, the officer always wearing a frilled shirt and hair powder, and a helmet covered or partially covered with bearskin, and surmounted by a plume. The men were armed with a firelock, and a bayonet which screwed over the muzzle of the gun.

    The colours carried by each of the corps were the gift of the ladies of the neighbourhood. One of the colours bears the tender suggestion, 'We Guard Those we Love,' whilst another, equally loyal but more prosaic, has ' Our King, Laws, and Trade.' These colours, six in all, were deposited in the Churches of St. Mary Magdalen, Bermondsey, and St. Mary, Rotherhithe, on the disbanding of the old Volunteers. In 1877 they were presented to Colonel Bevington and placed by him in the Drill Hall. They are fine specimens of embroidery, though now worn and faded. The 'Place of Arms,' as the headquarters used to be called, was for the First Corps, in the old Artillery Hall of Horselydown, which they shared with the company in that parish. The Second Corps had 'Jamaica House,' in Cherry Garden Street, pulled down about forty years ago.   The inspection ground for the corps of the locality was the' Spa Road Gardens,' -then a fashionable place of resort. The modern Volunteer movement, which was inaugurated in 1859, led to the enrolment of a corps in Bermondsey and another in Rotherhithe. The Rotherhithe Corps (23rd Surrey) was enrolled in 1861.

    These two corps were amalgamated in 1863 under the title of the 4th Surrey Administrative Battalion, which was altered to the 6th Surrey Rifle Volunteers in 1881. This designation was changed to the 3rd Volunteer Battalion, the' Queen's' Royal West Surrey Regiment, in 1883, the uniform originally dark green with scarlet facings, ill conformity with the uniform of the 'Queen's' Royal West Surrey Regiment.

    .The present commodious Drill Hall was built in 1876 from the design of Major Gale, architect; and erected at the expense of the late Colonel Bevington, who spared no means to make the battalion efficient. The spirit shown by the Volunteers of 1802 caused Charles Yorke, Secretary of War, to exclaim: If our martial spirit be once extinguished our wealth is vain and our commerce fruitless. For my own part I wish to see the spirit of valour flourish among our countrymen. I wish that every one of them should, as in the days of our ancestors, have his helmet and his sword suspended over his chimney ready to be put on, and his horse prepared to bear him against the first enemy that shall dare to invade his native land. .


    May these patriotic words be laid to heart by the young men whom Mr. Haldane invites to enter' the ranks of the Territorial Army.

    H. A. KEYSE.

     Mr. H.L.Phillips (Old Mortality) has kindly sent a newspaper cutting

     dated May 8, '1801, which reads as' follows :-

    The Bermondsey Volunteers, commanded by Major Gaitskill, on Tuesday last had their first grand field day; for the summer, and were received at the Parade at the Spa, by Lord Onslow, Lord-Lieutenant of the County of Surrey. Notwithstanding the winter recess, the corps performed the various evolutions and firings with such accuracy and exactness, as was highly honourable to themselves and gratifying to the commanding officer, and which produced the most flattering commendations from his lordship. ' ,.

    A numerous assemblage of spectators were admitted by tickets, to whom the gardens afforded the most delightful promenade, highly enlivened by the splendour 9Hhe day, and the beauty of the evening, and which greatly added to the gaiety of 'the scene. After the 'field exercise the corps, with Lord Onslow, the High Sheriff and a number of visitors partook of an excellent dinner given by the honorary members, for whose liberality and politeness the corps is much indebted.

    This short account of a Volunteer 'field day' a century ago is interesting to compare with the reports of this year's Territorial Army manoeuvres on Salisbury Plain.-EDITOR.]


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  • 04/06/14--23:35: Bateman's Engineering
    This cutting comes from the Kentish Mercury January 1883. I know nothing else about Bateman's not even where their site was,.

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  • 04/08/14--00:52: Hackney Power Station
  • Sorry - this isn't Greenwich - but its such a great picture.
    This is Metropolitan Borough of Hackney's power station  - probably in the late 1930s. It comes from "Wonders of World Engineering" Part 50 (sadly not dated).
    The remains of the power station are alongside the Lea, north of Millfields Road.

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  • 04/08/14--01:37: Charlton Tram Depot
  • The London County Council's Central Tram Depot was in Charlton. People might remember it better as the 'Airfix Building' in Feltram Way (Mr. Fell was the Department's Head).  There were considerable remains still there in the 1980s, and it would be interesting to know if this is still the case.
    The following is extracts from an article on London Trams in Wonders of World Engineering  Part 32. Undated but probably mid-1930s. 

    GIHS has never had a speaker on any of the various tram related sites in Charlton and Greenwich and are anxious to hear from volunteers!

    "The overhauling and repair of such a fleet is a big task requiring three works, which are at Hendon, West Ham and Charlton. Those at Charlton are the largest of their type in Great Britain. They occupy some seven acres and are planned to deal, if necessary, with all the cars in service during the course of a year. Every car: has to be examined annually and certified to the Ministry of Transport before it is relicensed for public service. Generally a car is given a complete overhaul, occupying about thirteen days, every second year.

    Removing the body (see below **)
    The work is divided into two sections, one dealing with the body and the other with the truck and the motors. When the car arrives a schedule of the work to be done is circulated with the vehicle to all the shops. The first task is to lift the body from the trucks by an electric hoist, and to replace the worn trucks and motors by reconditioned ones. Then the car is placed on the body shop ropeway. During its journey through the shop the body work, wiring and electrical equipment are examined and repaired, if necessary.

    The controllers are replaced, power and lighting cables are tested; circuit- breakers and switches are removed and recalibrated on a specially designed motor generator set. Trolley bases, booms and heads are replaced annually with overhauled units. Fittings and furniture such as seat cushions are dealt with in another section. If the work cannot be completed in scheduled time the car is withdrawn from the routine schedule and passed to the auxiliary body shop. Meanwhile, sections of framing consisting of complete side frames, platforms and top cover vestibule ends are assembled ready for fitting. When this has been done the car is delivered at the paint shop on another ropeway. Two tracks accommodate six cars each, and extend into a drying chamber with a capacity of six cars. The cars are washed down and given one coat of paint and one of varnish, double-tier scaffolding enabling both decks to be painted simultaneously. The interiors are floodlit" so that portable lamps are not needed.

    Seats are cleaned by an apparatus which combines beating and suction. The seats rest on a chain conveyer table which passes through a sheet-iron cabinet, inside which leather thongs on revolving drums beat the seat, half the drums turning in a vertical plane and half in a horizontal plane. The dust is removed by an exhauster fan and passed through a duct to dust-collecting filter bags outside the building. Compressed air jets in the base of the cabinet clean the underside of the seat and disturb dust on the ledges of seat frames.

    Motors and trucks are dismantled on the truck shop roadway. The motors are inspected and repaired in an adjoining shop and reassembled. They are tested by an hour's run on light load in either direction of rotation 'before they are replaced on the trucks.

    Axle Testing

    SOME 28,500 ploughs are overhauled and about 1,500 new ones are made in a year. The plough shop consists of three moving tables, a loading platform and two hydraulic presses. The plough is placed on a conveyer and during a journey of about 50 feet it is stripped of defective parts. At the end of the table hydraulic presses remove rivets and re-rivet the friction plates, and the plough is then placed on one of the two conveyers moving in the opposite direction. On the return journey the shoes are replaced and the fuses and top contacts are put into working order. Axles are
    tested for cracks by the electro-magnetic method.   A powerful electro-magnet magnetises a part, over which a solution of iron filings and paraffin is poured. If there is a fracture the filings form in a small heap across the gap and reveal it. Magnetic brake shoes are produced by a two-unit plant, each unit having four machines, one for bar-cutting,' one for piano-milling one for four-spindle drilling and tapping, and one for cropping. In the wheel shop independent grinding machines deal with re-tyred wheels and with tyres on which the flats are not so deep as to make grinding too costly, A wheel-lathe re- moves flats and reforms flanges. Before wheel tyres are shrunk on to the centres they are expanded by electric tyre-heating transformers. Worn tyres are removed by oxy-coal-gas cutters. The welding shop is equipped with electric welding machines and transformers, and oxy-acetylene welding apparatus. Other sections include the smiths' shop, foundry, woodworking shop, sections for electrical and light repairs, and sections for printing destination blinds. Stores and auxiliary services are accommodated also. Apart from Charlton and the other works there are the depots where the tramway cars are housed, cleaned and maintained, and where minor repairs are executed. The maintenance of the rails and the wires is another big task.
    **Caption - "Removing the body of a tramway car from its trucks by means of an electric hoist.  The work of an overhaul shop is divided into two sections, one dealing with the body and the other with the truck and motors. The truck and motors are replaced with reconditioned pats and the body is placed on a ropeway which conveys it through the various sections of the body shop.  Here body work, wiring  and electrical equipment are examined.
    All photo credits are to London Transport

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  • 04/09/14--00:26: Article 0
    Now - what was in Kidbrooke before the Ferrier??

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    Greenwich Industrial History - we take that as the factories and works of our local area, and accept that engineering and engineering innovation played a major part of that.   However Woolwich is just as important for military engineering - and the early years of the Royal Engineers in the area we now call the Royal Arsenal and the Royal Military Academy.  

    The article below doesn't mention the role played in Woolwich but it does talk about the formation of the RE. It is taken from Wonders of World Engineering  Part 40.  1937.

    (and - by the way - the Royal Engineers have an excellent museum in Gillingham)

    ENGINES of war are no new invention, and attempts at the mechanizationof armed forces were made many ages ago in man's struggle for power. The scythes on ancient British chariots, the siege engines of the Romans, the armour of medieval knights, the application of gunpowder-  all represent steps in the slow development of warfare through the centuries 
    Now the day of the sword and spear hasceased and the defence of countries depends on the accuracy of scientific calculations and on industrial resources.  The struggle now lies on either side between men and machines, and military engineering is of as much importance as-the courage and resolution of the fighting units and the efficiency of industry mobilized for war. In the British Army the vast amount of engineering work entailed in the theatre ofwar, from trench construction to road and railway building, is undertaken by-the Corps of Royal Engineers 
    Among the earliest examples of military engineering in Great Britain werethe great roads built by the Romansto facilitate the movements of their legions. To-day, road making is one of the most important of all   military engineering activities in time of war. Mechanization can have little valuewithout good roads 
    Earthworks and other forms of fortification called for specialized attention even in the earliest times. By the beginning of the eighteenth century, after the establishment of an English standing army, a number of "King’s Engineers" had been appointed for special duties, mainly in connexion with fortifications. In 1700 there were twelveof these officials (they did not hold army rank) in the British Isles, but long before then the country's wars had necessitated the services of “Train Engineers"for the operation of the cannon and the supply of ordnance 
    The artillery, however, was separately established in 1716 and a Corps of Engineerswas formed with permanent personnel, augmented in war time, of twenty-eight engineers. A Company of Soldier Artificers was formed at Gibraltar in 1772, and these men played an important part in the siege of the Rock (1779-83) and in the building of thefirst of the famous gun galleries 
    The Corps of Engineers was granted thetitle of "Royal"in 1787 and in that year also was formed a Corps of Royal Military Artificers, in which theSoldier Artificers were afterwards incorporated. The Artificers were responsiblefor Wellington's famous fortifications, the Lines of Torres Vedas, before Lisbon in the Peninsular War.  In 1813 the Royal Military Artificers were renamed the Royal Sappers and Miners 
    A private soldier in the Royal Engineersis still termed a sapper and a sap is the name given to a heading run out from a trench dug parallel with aline of fortifications to be attacked.  The Royal Sappers and Miners performed invaluable work at the siege of Sebastopol and elsewhere during the Crimean War. At the conclusion of hostilitiesin 1856 the Royal Sappers andMiners (which consisted of rank and file only to this date) were united to the existing Corps of Royal Engineers.  The East India Company's Engineer officers, with the traditions of Lucknow and the storming of Delhi well established in British history, were amalgamated with the Corps of Royal Engineersin 1862. 


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  • 04/17/14--01:38: Some GLIAS stuff today
  • The Newsletter of the Greater London Archaeology Society arrived yesterday  - so what have they got to say about Greenwich ---

    Well - last night they had Ian Bull speaking about the Royal Arsenal Railway  - sorry, I didn't advertise it but I didn't actually know about it until half an hour before it started, due it only arriving after lunch  - so - ho hum.   (but you can hear Ian speaking at GIHS on 17th June).

    HOWEVER - Andrew Turner will continue his walk along the Greenwich Riverside on  7th June.  The whole walk will focus on the Charlton Riverside and they hope to see old British Ropes site - and (GLIAS doesn't tell you that, but I have exclusive info).  If you want to go you can't just turn up - you need to email or send an SAE to GLIAS Walks, 84a Kingston Road,  Luton, LU2 7SA. 

    So - what is there about Greenwich/Woolwich inside this newsletter????.

    Under 'Startling things in South East London'  Bob Carr mentions the soon to be defunct Sainsbury's supermarket - no detail but he did that last time - he then goes off on about Peckham Library.

    Then a note about the consultation on the proposed change of name to Bugsby's Reach - that's -er - by me. 

    There is also a note by Sarah Timewell about the Lewisham prefab estate (GIHS has a speaker on this on 10th March next year).

    Under 'News in Brief' Bob Carr mentions the demolition of the Enderby Boiler House and the chimney.

    If you want to read the rest - mostly about their AGM - the web address is


    GLIAS has also produced No.12 of London's Industrial Archaeology - this has articles mostly about the Surrey Iron Railway (in Wandsworth and Croydon) - as well as something in the Beaufoy Vinegar Brewery (Vauxhall) and the archaeology of London Underground .....

    but there are two brief pages giving an extract from the diary of a  Franz Grillparzer who travelled on the Greenwich Railway in 1836.  He liked Greenwich itself  'Magnificent  park .... beautiful view'.  With the railway he notes the speed 'in six minutes you arrive in Deptford'  - not sure if he liked it or not.

    I also note that this edition of the journal - and the last one - had a shiny cover.  I must congratulate the current editor with getting away with that - when I edited it, if such a thing had been proposed, the sky would have fallen in and everyone would have had histerixs.  (in 50 years time they might make another small change).  I would also like to congratulate him on getting several journals out in quick succession  - I know only too well how hard that must be.


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    For those interested in class distinctions and workplace social life in the 1950s - the following set of pictures comes from the company magazine of Harvey's - metal fabrications (specialising in holes) base in Woolwich Road - now the fire station site.

    The Foremen's Annual Outing to Brighton - luncheon at the Royal Pavilion

    The Heavy Tank Shop Annual Outing.


    Engineers Outing

    Lady Cleaners Outing - note Mr Mace, Security, at the back.

    Oil Tank Shop Beano - and clearly having a much jollier time than the others,

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  • 05/14/14--00:35: UGB office staff
  • Just in case we run away with the idea that all Greenwich workers were men doing heavy process work  - here are some pictures of office staff at Charlton's United Glass works. With thanks to Brenda Batho.

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    The Association for Industrial Archaeology is the national body dealing with industrial heritage - and they tend to get notice taken of them.  I was therefore good to see that their current News (169 Summer 2014) features a longish article on the risks to our own Enderby Wharf.

    The article is under the heading
    Enderby Wharf  - London  - At risk

    "On the south bank of the Thames in Greenwich northeast of the historic town centre, the Enderby Wharf site is the cradle of the world's communication revolution, on a par with the Ironbridge Gorge, cradle of the industrial revolution, and comparable with Bletchley Park".

    The article continues to describe how: "From 1857 submarine telegraph cables were manufactured on the site, these being laid on routes such as Corsica-Sardinia, Lowestoft-Zandvoort, Malta-Alexandria and Sicily -- - Algeria. In the mid 1860s the successful transatlantic cables laid by Brunel's SS Great Eastern were made here and many more followed. ......

    ......................The telegraph revolution of the mid-Victorian period radically changed stock market speculation. business in general, the way the Empire was administered and international politics'.... it is further claimed by Tom Standage in his  thought-provoking book The Victorian Internet that compared with the present-day Internet the electric telegraph was the more significant, since the ability to communicate globally at all in real- time was a qualitative shift, while the change
    brought about by the modern Internet was merely a quantitative shift.


    "As a heritage asset Enderby Wharf is as important to Greenwich as the Royal Observatory, and as important to industrial history as Stephenson's Rocket"

    and continues with the sad tale of dereliction and destruction on the site - and the consequent award of planning consent as a cruise liner terminal and more and more blocks of flats.

    (The article does not mention what appears to be the complete ignorance of this site by the Council, the developers, and - indeed - English Heritage.   A small group of local historians are battling on. Please get in touch if you would like to help)

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  • 05/25/14--03:48: More from IA News
  • Yesterday's posting featured the article in the current Industrial Archaeology News about our own Enderby Wharf  - but that was not the only Greenwich (well nearby Greenwich) items featured in that issue.

      **** a long article on "Roller flour milling, white bread and the Millennium Mills, London.  Millennium Mills will be familiar to anyone who looks across to the other side of the river - easily visible from upstairs in my Humber Road house.  This is an important article about an important site.

    ****  a short note about a grant to the (just up in Rotherhithe) Brunel Museum - to allow them to open up access to Marc Brunel's entrance shaft.

    ****  a page on Lewisham's Excalibur prefab and much in the news estate.  (we have a speaker on that early next year)

    **** an item on Deptford Dockyard (in Greenwich until the 1970s) and the grant of planning approval by Mayor B.Johnson instead of the decision being made, democratically, by London Borough of Lewisham. 

    (Industrial Archaeology News


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  • 05/27/14--04:25: Albion Sugar Woolwich

  • ALBION SUGAR were on the Arsenal site and one of the many sugar works in east London.  I would be grateful for details of the buildings they occupied - since I know they were of particular interest but have forgotten why.
    However - we have been sent this really rather beautiful brochure about the works - but, unfortunately, the facilities available on this blog site will not allow me to reproduce the typography as I would like.   (If anyone would like a PDF of the whole thing, let me know).   .

    The sudden appearance of a fully equipped sugar factory, springing into adult existence one bright morning from apparently nothing, is as rare a phenomenon in the industrial sphere as is the emergence of a new comet in the world of astronomy. In both cases speculation naturally arises as to the origin of the new body, its composition, size and orbit -its very raison d'etre. The Directors of Albion Sugar Company Ltd feel that the many questions which are sure to be raised about this new concern merit a full and frank reply. To anticipate and answer such questions as a potential customer would be likely to ask is the purpose of this brochure.

    Albion Wharf, Woolwich, London, Autumn 1929.
    Albion Wharf and Factory from the Thames
    The Story of an Idea - and its Realisation.

    One of the most striking features of industrial progress in the last quarter of a century has been the waning of that austere spirit of individualism which not infrequently caused useless friction, and a corresponding waxing of friendly relations between businesses with identical interests. In many instances this friendship exists without any kind of amalgamation or even working agreement. A case in point is the amity that has for some years existed between the firms of White, Tomkins & Courage Ltd, R. & W. Paul Ltd, and Gillman & Spencer Ltd-three businesses engaged in the manufacture of brewing materials, yet each conducted entirely independently of the others.

    These three firms have now, while retaining the same complete individuality as hitherto, come into closer association in a new enterprise- Albion Sugar Company Limited. It is as well at this juncture to state unequivocally that this amalgamation is confined to this single development.

    Scope for Expansion

    THE heads of these three firms had for a long held the opinion that, subject to certain requirements being fulfilled, great scope for the expansion of business lay in the manufacture of Invert Sugar. The idea simmered for some years, until it was clear that all the basic conditions could at last be satisfied, and Albion Sugar Company Limited, Woolwich is the outcome.

    What were those conditions, and what were the reasons for them?

    The view was held that it would be possible to manufacture Invert Sugar of the highest quality, and at a price which would compete favourably with current quotations, provided first, that the initial outlay could be kept within reasonable bounds, so that it would not be necessary to pay interest on
    a large capital: and, second, that, within this limit, such premises could be found as would render practicable the economical handling of goods from raw material to finished product. I t was realised that by adopting the most modern designs and devices in plant a considerable saving in working expenses could be effected, and that a second item on which capital expenditure might be saved was that of premises. Would it be possible to find, ready to hand, and at an economical price, a suitable site with premises capable of housing a complete Invert Sugar plant, lending itself to expansion if necessary, and having both rail and water facilities ? Would it be like crying for the moon to hope for such a Utopia?

    The Search Succeeds

    For some years, indeed, the search seemed hopeless: no section of the navigable Thames was left uninspected, yet nothing that satisfied all these requirements was discovered. At last, however, when hope had been - almost given up, the dream was realised. The Albion Wharf, Woolwich, property of the State, came into the market, and an inspection quickly revealed that it was, in every respect, an ideal site for the new venture. Negotiations took place with the Admiralty, and the freehold purchase of the land and premises was effected at a figure which was to the entire satisfaction of the buyers. Thus the initial obstacle, which had at one time seemed almost Insuperable, was overcome, and Albion Sugar Company Limited was duly formed and registered

    Ideal Premises

    PREMISES having been acquired, plans which had hitherto existed merely as ideas began to take shape, and it was realised that nothing could have been more remarkable or more fortunate than the ready adaptability of the Albion Wharf property to the new Company's ideas and requirements. The main factory building comprises three storeys, its ground dimensions being 200 feet by 60 feet, with two wings of the same height and ground dimensions of 160 feet by 50 feet each. Like all State property of a permanent character, this factory is a thoroughly substantial structure, and in all such important matters as lighting, ventilation, stairways and doors it lacks nothing that the most exacting modern requirements could demand. This building lent itself to the perfect disposition of the complete plant, just as though it had been specially designed for the purpose. At the same time, sufficient space has been left for future expansion, and the whole of the plant could be duplicated and even triplicated, if necessary, without occasioning any disturbance of the present arrangement.

    A Model Wharf.

    The second remarkably valuable asset possessed by these premises is its river frontage. A granite wall 400 feet long, such as no private concern trading for profit could afford to construct to-day, protects the buildings and land against the highest spring tide and also affords a 18 feet berth, so that cargoes can be landed direct to the warehouse by means of a powerful electric crane: coal supplies are also discharged by a 35cwt grab and carried straight to the boilers by automatic conveyor. (It may here be stated that the adoption of the latest labour-saving devices has been a guiding principle throughout the whole equipment of the factory, at a saving of many thousands of pounds per annum

    A Natural Water Supply

    To proceed with some of the numerous advantages afforded by this unique site-advantages which have been either utilised as they stood or adapted to special purposes. In the process of Invert Sugar manufacture a vast quantity of water is required for condensing and cooling purposes, and it was found possible to utilise an existing inlet from the Thames as a means of supplying water in unlimited quantities. This is an immense advantage which could readily be measured in terms of cash

    A private railway siding

    So much for the substantial benefits gained from so desirable a riverfront, let us now consider what the back of the premises has to offer. First, a group of buildings which, without any appreciable alteration, have been adapted to hold a large battery of boilers, an extensive garage, a coopers' shop and store-rooms: a second substantial building, connected with the factory by a bridge. In which the spacious offices and laboratory are housed. Second, a private railway-siding connecting up directly with the main lines. Trucks can thus be loaded and despatched to their destination with a minimum of handling, and equal facilities are, of course, available for the speedy and economical return of empties. "Direct from producer to consumer" that hackneyed and misused slogan, becomes, in the case of Albion products, a phrase fraught with significance .

    A Fleet of Lorries.

    ROAD TRANSPORT is another item Company is particularly favoured. A splendid road skirts the whole of the premises and leads into the Albion Road, via which the Albion lorries speed into all parts

    Low Costs Achieved

    The list of advantages offered by these ideal premises could be lengthened much more, but enough has now been stated to show that, in their total, these remarkable facilities have made possible the avoidance of a heavy incubus of charges-charges which, no matter under what heading they are debited, inevitably have to be taken into account when costs are calculated. As has been stated, it was on the possibility of being able to initiate and carry on the business with a minimum of capital and working expenses, that the original conception was based, and it is gratifying to be able to record that those early ambitions have now been fully realised.

    Staff and Plant.

    THE Albion Wharf premises having been secured, there remained to be settled two other matters of very great importance. First there was the finding of a first-class works- manager and the appointment of a trained staff: second, the purchase and installation of the plant

    THE Works management

    FURTHER good fortune was experienced in securing the services as Works Manager, of Mr. Thomas S. Dick, than whom there is probably no better-known figure in the Invert Sugar industry. Mr. Dick's thirty years' practical experience, in Greenock and London, of every branch of sugar refining and of Invert Sugar manufacture had qualified him as being pre-eminently the man for this important key- position, and it was very gratifying to the Company that he consented to take charge of the new works, for it was realised that, although all the Directors were experienced in various branches of the manufacture of brewing materials, and controlled, in their several staffs, highly qualified chemists, it was nevertheless essential to have on the spot a responsible works-manager who could devote all his time and energy to Albion Sugar Company.

    Entirely New Plant.

    The purchase and installation of the plant was undertaken with the Works Manager's invaluable co-operation, As has already been stated, it was not the Company's policy to economise on initial
    outlay, but rather to ensure that the plant should be a hundred per cent efficient and as much per cent automatic as human ingenuity could devise: this definitely stated principle guided the purchase of every item of plant, and evidence of its application is to be seen on every hand. The whole of the plant is new and of the most modern type: in its various functions are to be seen many devices making for a saving of power and labour and thereby contributing their quota to economical manufacture. So successfully has this initial sine-qua-non  of low-cost production been met that the long-visualised possibility of manufacturing highest quality Invert Sugar at the lowest possible cost has now become an accomplished fact. Thus far, with all their preliminary requirements satisfied and economical manufacture guaranteed, the Albion Directors realise that their hopes and aims have been abundantly justified.

    Invert Sugar Processes

    We reproduce in these pages a number of photographs which will doubtless give the reader a good idea of the magnitude of the Albion Wharf premises and plant. Beyond a brief title to each photograph we will not attempt any description, as to do so would mean embarking on a necessarily long dissertation on the processes of sugar- refining and inversion. Suffice it to say that raw sugar is unloaded at the Albion quay and that Invert Sugars to meet the various requirements of the brewing trade leave the Albion factory by rail, lorry and barge: the flow of processes between the first and final stages is followed in the order of the illustrations. The works are supplemented by modern and fully equipped laboratories, and every batch of Invert Sugar manufactured has to pass the most stringent laboratory tests before being released for despatch.

    An Invitation

    There are no secrets in Albion Wharf, and an open invitation is hereby cordially extended to all brewers and to members of their executive staffs to pay a visit to the factory. A conducted tour of the works, tracing the flow of processes from start to finish, is a highly interesting experience, and it is hoped that a great many brewers, whether customers or not, will make an early opportunity to pay a visit.


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    In the post this morning there were three newsletters - all of interest. 
    Let's start with one from an actual workplace  -

    Woodlands Farm.  This newsletter has come a bit late, but with an apology - sadly all the dates listed in it have gone except for Open Farm Sunday - which is this Sunday, 8th  11-4

    - also a long way ahead - on 6th of December there is a bird watching walk.

    The newsletter has all sorts of articles - a rather touching one about lambs and lambing - and another about a tree survey 'itree London' - and something on their garden and a bird report.  Most interesting to historians is an article about Wool Weights - all about clove weights, tods and weighs. Well worth reading.
    Woodlands Farm Trust, 331 Shooters Hill, Welling, Kent, DA16 3RP

    Historic Gas Times. I admit this is a bit of speciality. The front page has a wonderful article on it by local gas historian, Brian Sturt.  This is all about our local gas works and the work of the collier ships which brought the coal down from Durham during the Great War.  I am going to ask Brian  if we can reproduce this article - since it is very important and I guess Historic Gas Times has a limited circulation.  He has come to speak to us on colliers in the past - but I will as again.

    Historic Gas Times. published by the Institution of Gas Engineers and Managers.

    GLIAS Newsletter
    The June 2014 Newsletter doesn't seem to have any editorial content about Greenwich and Woolwich. But they do list some events of interest. 

    7th June (this Saturday) Greenwich and Charlton Riverside Revisited led by Andrew Turner (and I know Andrew has some real surprises and lots of new information to give you). You have to book for this - email  (too late to post now so I won't bother with the address)

    Crossness Public Steaming Days  22nd June     27th July  31st August  If you haven't seen the engines - you will never forget them, an amazing experience.

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    Our attention has been drawn to RALPH LUCAS, 24, Westcombe Terrace, Westcombe Hill, Blackheath, S.E.

    Anyone know anything about him?? He lived there in the 1880s.

    I always knew Greenwich was important in car invention - I've been going on about the two steam cars built on Enderby Wharf in the 1840s  - but this is yet another inventor.

    He exhibited at Cordingley's Autocar and Motor Cycle Show at the Agricultural Hall, Islington held 3rd - 10th July 1899.
    and they said that Mr. Lucas "introduces us to what is probably the most interesting exhibit in the show" 

    This was a "graduating change-speed gear" with "a very pretty action".


    Looking up Mr. Lucas on the net I find that the ever reliable Grace's Guide has a whole page of references to him and his gears plus some pictures.
    From GracesGuideJump to: navigation, search

    He also appears at the AGM and Dinner of the Blackheath Automobile Club in 1907 as a Committee member and where his address is given as Upper Siebert Road, Westcombe Park, SE. and he is described as the "Designer of the Valveless car"

    Grace also has a page on North-Lucas which seems to be a manufacturing company he set up in Putney Vale with a Mr. Oliver North.  They made one 'revolutionary' car apparently.

    So - what else do we know about this??

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