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Notes and news — February 1982

In this issue:

Stoneways — footnote

(GLIAS Newsletter December 1981) In the 1820s the Teigngrace Granite Stone Works (in Devon) was offering cargoes of up to 300 tons of ashlar for purposes such as "Paving", shipped from Teignmouth. Since Haytor granite was used for the British Museum and the National Gallery, might it not also have been used for more pedestrian purposes? (The source of my information is West Country Harbour by H.D. Trump). Philip Daniell


Despite the weather having put a stop to most outdoor activity not everyone is staying at home by the fire. At 8.00 on a very cold winter morning, Thursday 7 January 1982, just before the snow, a two-cylinder vertical reciprocating pump was moved from the ex PLA pumping station at Lavender Dock, Surrey Commercial Docks, to the Brunel Engine House at Rotherhithe. The pump, which was, used to prime big centrifugal pumps at Lavender Dock, is to be repainted and erected on the lawn outside the Engine House with other exhibits. The press photographers who were due to record the event did not turn up. Much credit to Bob Barnes of the Brunel Project for his dedication. Bob Carr

GLIAS losses

Many members will have heard, with sadness, of the death of Michael Rix last year (Denis, who knew him well, is writing an obituary), but may not have heard that Miss Enid Vaughan Williams died on Christmas Day. Enid was one of our 'active' members: not only was she to be seen, quietly interested, at lectures and on visits, but also helped more actively on the Committee. She will be missed. Our sympathy to her sister who nursed her in her last illness.


In 1881 George Hawkins set up the Globe Ropeworks on the Isle of Dogs, with Mr. Tipson a ropemaker, using money made by discovering gold while digging his garden in Australia! Hawkins & Tipson grew into an international group of companies, moving to Thamesmead in 1971. John Stickland wrote Hawkins & Tipson, The First Hundred Years for the group's house magazine to celebrate the centenary, basing his interesting account on his grandfather Charles Hawkins. 'The Story of Hawkins & Tipson' of 1952. I am indebted to Mike Bussell for bringing this article to my notice and to John Stickland and Nicholas Hawkins, the editor of H & T News, for a supply of offprints of this four-page illustrated account to offer to GLIAS members. If you would like a copy please send me an A4 or A5 SAE. Bob Carr

Gazetteer of London industrial archaeology: Lambeth: Stockwell and Brixton

Part 1 of the list of Lambeth sites (Waterloo area) appeared in Newsletter 69 (GLIAS Newsletter August 1980). This part is also arranged in a sequence which may be followed on foot. Included are some 'fringe' items to add interest en route. Any corrections or extra information on these or other sites in Lambeth will be gratefully received at 36 Pearman Street, SE1 7RB. Info correct at Jan 1982. David Thomas

Owing to a quirk of production, these sites start at No. 367, rather than 351. The gap will be filled!

Notes: * — site to be demolished
NFI — no further info available at present.

367. 139-143 Clapham Rd, SW9. Former printing works which since 1936 has been the HQ of Freeman's Mail Order firm, founded c.1911.

368. Binfield Rd., SW4. London Transport Stockwell Bus Garage, 1950-4* Reinforced concrete glazed roof arched to give completely unobstructed circulating area. 9 bays. Best seen from rear, Lansdowne Way, SW8.

369. Binfield Rd., SW4. Underground public convenience in centre of road. Gents' section has two banks of urinals with granite and glass 'fish tank' cisterns. Assumed adjacent Ladies' less exotic.
(Opposite, 211 Clapham Rd, small cinema of c. 1910) (40 Stockwell Rd, SW9, YMCA, 1905. Large.)

370. 1 Stockwell Green, SW9. Educational Institute, 1848 (photo)

371. 103/5 Stockwell Rd, SW9. For many years part of premises of Pride & Clarke, car dealers. At rear, alongside Bromgrove Rd, is former depot of London Parcels Delivery Co. Ltd. — presumably ramp led to first floor stables. NFI on rest of site.

372. Corner Stockwell Green/Combermere Rd, SW9. Former brewery of Edmund & Thomas Waltham, c.1880. Part used as ambulance garage.


Although fairly close to central London, Brixton is (as is Camden to the north) very much a centre in its own right. It had five cinemas (two survive), several substantial department stores and extensive arcaded shopping. It is best visited for atmosphere on a busy Saturday afternoon. Most of the arcades are closed off outside of trading hours.

373. 207 Stockwell Rd, SW9. Astoria Cinema, opened 1929. Designed in Spanish style by Edward Store for Paramount. Closed 1973; currently undergoing renovation with the aim of reopening as multi-use entertainments centre. (>>>)

374. 7 Gresham Road, SW9. Abeng Youth & Community Centre, opened 1862 as the Angell Town literary & scientific institute for working men (Some sources say 1872).

375. Atlantic Road, SW9, is dominated by the high level lattice railway viaduct built 1867 jointly by the London Chatham & Dover Railway and London Brighton & South Coast Railway, (photo — caption should read LBSCR.).

376. Brick railway viaduct built by London, Chatham & Dover Railway in 1863. Cast iron columns support the platform of Brixton station.
(arch no. 11, fish shop of L.S. Mash, is worth a look for the decorative tiles and large slab; arch 25 was Marks & Spencer's first London Penny Bazaar, opened 1903)

377. Station Hotel, 1880. Main attraction is six-sided clock.

370. No. 1 Stockwell Green, SW9, built in 1848 as an educational institute in Jacobean style. Recently (1980) renovated.

372. Disused brewery of Edward & Thomas Waltham at corner of Stockwell Green and Combermere Road, SW9.

375/6/7 Atlantic Road, Brixton, SW9.

375. High level lattice railway viaduct built jointly by L.C.D.R. and L.B.S.C.R, 1867.

376. Brick viaduct of 1863; cast-iron columns support platform of Brixton station. In one of the arches, no. 25, was Marks & Spencer's first London Penny Bazaar.

377. Station Hotel, 1880, with six-sided clock by William Sainsbury, clockmaker.

378. Granville Arcade, 1937, off Atlantic Rd./Coldharbour Lane, SW9. The most recent of Brixton's arcades (bar a very short section opened as part of the tube station) in 1937. Note naming — First Avenue, etc. Built by a Mr. Granville-Grossman.

379. Walton Lodge Sanitary Steam Laundry, 374 Coldharbour Lane, SW9. 1904 office/house fronting 1896 laundry. Still in use. See GLIAS publication: Walton Lodge Laundry, The Story of an Enterprise.
(One of the many laundry receiving shops remains unaltered in appearance in use as an opticians' at 425 Coldharbour Lane. Marked as site 385a)

© Sidney Ray

380. Electric Avenue, SW9. A curved street built in late 1880s. With use as street market, pavements were canopied and the then still novel electric light used for illumination. Reported to be refurbished this year.
(In the area of Electric Avenue are two arcades, Reliance, 1929 and Market Row, 1931.)

Electric Avenue © Leigh Chambers 2018

381. Bon Marche, 442-4 Brixton Rd, SW9. Store founded in 1877 by James Smith, a Tooting printer who made £80,000 in two days on horses. Extended several times; by 1900 was advertised as the first purpose-built Departmental store. Closed, by then under control of the John Lewis Partnership, in 1975. Currently trading as 'Brixton Fair'.

381a. Bon Marche had a substantial workshops and furniture depository in nearby Brighton Terrace; this still stands in alternative use.

There are several other large stores worth a second glance:
381b. 392 — former Montague Burton, with typical billiard saloon above
381c. 412-440 — Former department store of Quin & Axtens
381d. 472-488 — Morley's, opened 1927, still trading
381e. 3-9 Acre Lane, SW2 — former South Suburban Cooperative Society.

382.* Corner Brighton Terrace/ Berneys Grove, SW9. Former (1914 Kelly's) Empress Theatre of Varieties, more recently Granada Cinema and currently a bingo hall. Outline planning permission has been given (1981) for redevelopment of the site (photo). (>>>)

383. Lambeth Town Hall, 1908. Additional floor 1938.
(Nearby, at 26 Acre Lane, are alms-houses of 1822-6).

384. Brixton Oval, SW2. Ritzy Cinema, 1910. Alias Pavilion, alias Classic. Closed 1976 and later reopened as independent (the former ABC, alongside the Town Hall, has also recently been operated by a small independent).

384a. Brixton Central Library, Brixton Oval. Tate Library, 1091-2, donated by local sugar daddy (buried South Met. Cem.)

385. 413 Coldharbour Lane, SW9. Former Temperance Billiard Halls Ltd. hall, in their distinctive architecture.

386.* Rushcroft Rd, SW2. Hefty blocks of flats, 1892-7, believed to have been built for Metropolitan Improved Dwellings Co. Currently occupied, but demolition planned.

387. 2 Tulse Hill, SW2. Purpose-built Brixton Roller Rink Ltd. skating hall. Known to date from before 1914 and to have been in alternative use for many years. NFI

388. Rear 2 Arlingford Rd, SW2. Small stables.

389. 103 Brixton Hill, SW2. Brixton Cinematograph Theatre Co. Ltd, later Royalty Cinema. In alternative use for at least 12 years. NFI
(Opposite, outside 108, is an example of the somewhat rare Edward VIII pillar boxes.) (>>>)

390. Brixton Windmill, end of Blenheim Gardens, SW2. A brick tower mill of 1816 which was used solely as a store from about 1860 to c.1900. A gas engine was then installed to drive a pair of stones (until 1934). The premises again became a store until purchased by the GLC in 1957 who re-capped the tower and equipped it with a set of basic milling machinery from a redundant windmill in Lincolnsh., though not to full working order. Open during daylight hours — small charge; see park keeper in nearby hut, who should have a leaflet for sale. (Survey of London Vol. 26).

391. Waterworks Rd, SW2. Offices of former Lambeth Waterworks Company. Also 1937 pumping house and two covered reservoirs.

392. Brixton Prison. Built as Surrey House of Correction. In 1818/9, enlarged on cessation of transportation in 1853 and again in 1890s. NFI

(Weary walkers will have noticed that hereabouts Brixton Hill steepens. This gradient was too much for horse trams and a stationary engine was used to cable-haul trams on this section. Made redundant when electric trams arrived). (>>>)

Gazetteer of London industrial archaeology: North Lambeth and North-West Southwark alterations

138. Workers' Housing, Campbell Buildings off Bayliss Road. (Same design as similar blocks at Vauxhall) — both sets being demolished 1/82.

160. Bankside Power Station. Ceased generating 1981.

Bankside Power Station © Robert Mason 2014

163. Stevenson & Howell's Essence works. Demolished 1981.

165. 59 Great Suffolk St. Bacon curers. Closed.

170. Borough Road, also Rotary St. Robert Hoe's factory, making rotary printing presses. Demolition completed.

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© GLIAS, 1982