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Notes and news — March 1973

In this issue:

The future of Dockland

The report of the Dockland Study Group has just been published by the G.L.C., price £2. The group was set up two years ago to consider possibilities for the future development of a 5,000-acre area of East London, which includes the P.L.A. docks system upstream of Tilbury. Some of these such as London Docks and Surrey Commercial Docks have already been closed. The report outlines a number of alternative proposals, and is intended as a 'consultative' document rather than a planning framework.

GLIAS will be anxious to see that future schemes take account of the many significant industrial buildings in the area, and that the character of Dockland is not needlessly destroyed. Michael Bussell

London's Industrial Monuments

I am sorry to report that London's oldest pillar box (GLIAS Newsletter May 1972) 'bit the dust' recently. This box, a First National Standard type, dated 1859, was situated at the junction of Furze Lane and Woodcote Valley Road with Foxley Lane at Purley. It was removed by the G.P.O. because it was a security risk, and unfortunately broke in several pieces during the removal process. It was taken away as scrap. Nancy Johns


Vick International Ltd., Brewery Road, N7. The former factory of John Milton Ltd., antiseptic manufacturers, notable for its decorative street facade with royal warrant coat of arms above the entrance gateway, is in the last stages of demolition.

NAAFI Warehouse & Office Complex, Kennings Way, London SE11. The 1920s NAAFI warehouse and office complex is now almost demolished. Distinctive features were the slatted roof ventilators for bacon curing, tea blending and produce warehousing, and the cellars for bottling plant which had a capacity of 25,000 dozen bottles.

In contrast, the main administrative offices (pictured below) since 1922, Imperial Court, Kennington Lane, have recently received a redecoration face-lift. These were built in 1836 as a school for the Licensed Victuallers. Terry Thomas

Former NAAFI HQ, now flats, Jan 2019

£175,000 grant for preservation of technological material

It was reported in the Daily Telegraph that a Government grant has been announced in Parliament for restoring and preserving technological material of historical interest. The grant of £175,000 is to be available in the coming financial year and will be administered by the Science Museum.

Old Waterloo Bridge

Also reported in the Daily Telegraph was the start of work to restore the abutment of old Waterloo Bridge on Victoria Embankment. The site is being prepared for a memorial to the engineer John Rennie, who built the bridge in 1817. A model of the old bridge is to be on display to the public.

Restoration of Kingsbury Mill completed

The Kingsbury Water Mill at St Albans has recently been restored and is now open to the public from 10am to 5pm daily.

Oil Jars

John Ashdown of 53 Bainton Road, Oxford, is compiling records of oil jars which were used to advertise the premises of oil men in London from the 18th century onwards. Half-jars would normally be mounted against the wall over the shop, and occasionally a free standing jar would be placed on a convenient ledge. A number survive, although the shop frontage may have been altered; the present occupant is usually an ironmonger or domestic supplies' retailer. If members know of any such jars, would they please inform John Ashdown at the above address; please give name and address of the shop, with any available details of the jars. Photos or sketches would be welcomed.

1 Godfrey Street, Chelsea, SW3 1, Polygon, Clapham Old Town, SW4 253 Tooley Street, SE1

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© GLIAS, 1973