Notes and news — February 1997
Gas versus electricity
- Gas versus electricity
- Royal Albert Dock Cold Store Compressor House
- Stretham Old Engine
- New River plaque
- The Dale in London and beyond
- Shoreditch Refuse Destructor and Generating Station
- 1996 AIA annual conference
- Underground Chislehurst
- Whitechapel Gasworks
- AIA visit to Poland
- Demolitions: Trico factory, Western Avenue and Cannon Cinema, Harrow
The traditional rivalry between Oxford and Cambridge seems to be moving into the field of environmentally friendly road transport. Oxford has had an electric bus operating a free service round the town for railway ticket holders. When at the railway station the electric bus is plugged into the mains to recharge its batteries for the next run. Cambridge however is now operating a free service round its town centre using a small bus powered by natural gas. Have GLIAS members noticed any gas-powered buses operating in the Greater London area? Surely we need such vehicles here. Bob Carr
Royal Albert Dock Cold Store Compressor House
Much demolition has taken place around the Royal Albert Dock in Newham but the engine house which formerly contained refrigeration machinery for the nearby cold store on the North Quay of the Dock has been retained. The reinforced-concrete cold store itself was demolished about five years ago and the red-brick compressor house to the north which has some architectural pretensions now stands relatively isolated. It is being redeveloped for office use and an interesting feature of the refurbishment is that the roof, which in refrigeration days was flooded with water to provide a cooling pond for the compressors, will, it is planned, once again be used for heat-exchange purposes, this time in conjunction with the office air-conditioning system.
Work is being carried out by the Fulcrum Engineering Partnership. The roof of the compressor house is surrounded by a high parapet and the space enclosed will be partially filled with water again, with glycol-filled pipes transferring heat from the offices below. So much demolition having taken place in the area, the compressor house, formerly obscure, is now a prominent feature of the local landscape and can be easily seen from a train on the Beckton extension of the Docklands Light Railway. The cold store and compressor house were built just before the First World War. Much hard work was required to destroy the ferro-concrete frame of the cold store building, as it was very soundly made. Bob Carr
Stretham Old Engine
The beam drainage engine at Stretham in Cambridgeshire, about ten miles north of Cambridge, was built in 1831 by the Butterley Company and has long been an item of industrial archaeological veneration.
In its working life up to 1940 it drove a scoop wheel of 33 feet diameter to raise water from the surrounding land into the River Great Ouse. The engine is of the single-cylinder rotative type with a cylinder diameter of three feet three inches and a stroke of eight feet. With a steam pressure of 10psi it would have developed about 75hp at 17 rpm. Each revolution of the scoop wheel raised 30 tons of water. In service the engine ran at about four revolutions per minute. The longest non-stop run was 47 days and nights during floods in 1919. Wagon boilers originally provided steam but new Lancashire boilers were installed in 1888.
Stretham Old Engine was superseded by a diesel engine housed in a shed at the back, and this second prime mover is itself now decidedly industrial archaeological. It used air-blast fuel injection and was built by Mirrlees and Co. in the 1920s. Work is presently being undertaken to make the steam engine movable and this June, as part of the Eastern England Regional Industrial Archaeology Conference, it should be possible to see this splendid beam engine in motion. Bob Carr
New River plaque
An iron plaque identifying the New River has been erected by Thames Water in Finsbury Park on the railings at the footbridge over the river where it turns east towards Green Lanes. (Entrance to the path from Endymion Road.)
Islington Council has accepted a tender from Thames Water for the first stage of restoration of the Canonbury stretch of the New River Walk. The walk is now closed between Willow Bridge Road and Canonbury Road until March. It will be closed again in October for the second stage of the work. Bill Firth
The Dale in London and beyond
It seems a long time from the November lecture to this newsletter, but that is no reason why a fascinating evening should not be reported. There was another large audience for Fred Bishop's talk. Starting with an outline of the history of Coalbrookdale, Fred then went on to show us examples of Coalbrookdale products in London and then further afield, as far as Australia. The London sites were interesting enough, particularly since we can visit them easily, but it is the Australian ones which remain in my memory, especially those of the fountain at the hospital in Sydney.
This was an excellent event and we are most grateful to Fred for giving us such an interesting talk. Bill Firth
Shoreditch Refuse Destructor and Generating Station
The buildings of the early, refuse-fired electricity generating station of 1895-7 in Coronet Street, N1, were recorded by GLIAS in 1986 (see Supplement to Newsletter 106, October 1986 and report by the Recording Group, 1988).
Since 1994, the site has been the home of The Circus Space, a training school for circus performers. With funding from various sources, they have converted the former generator hall into a splendid gymnasium, and the offices on the street frontage have been refurbished as studios and workshops, some of them available for letting to related organisations. A bid has been submitted to the National Lottery for the third phase of the scheme, which is to convert the refuse destructor building into an aerial training hall, and material from GLIAS's historical report has been of value in backing this submission. Malcolm Tucker
Details of The Circus Space's programme of 'cabaret' performances, and their adult education classes for circus skills. Tel: 020 7613 4141
1996 AIA annual conference
The 1996 Annual Conference of the Association for Industrial Archaeology was held at Bangor in North Wales and so the field trips were based in the north-western portion of the Principality. We were accommodated in one of the University Halls of Residence.
A pre-conference seminar on 'Current research and thinking in Industrial Archaeology' was held during the Friday morning and afternoon for the early-arriving delegates. The conference proper opened on the Friday evening with a general survey of IA in the area given by Dr Dafydd Gwyn, who also helped to produce the first class AIA Gazetteer of the region. He explained that copper mining and slate quarrying have been the main industries with water providing the principal mechanical power. To facilitate transport development, some famous major bridges had been built in the area.
The Saturday morning was occupied with some high-quality illustrated lectures on 'The social Archaeology of the North Wales slate industry', followed by 'Twenty five years of fieldwork in the North Wales slate industry' and then 'Aerial photography and Industrial Archaeology'. After lunch there was a choice of one from three visit options — The Great Orme Tramway, Port Penrhyn and Penrhyn Castle, or the Welsh Slate Museum and Britannia Bridge. On Sunday morning, the AGM of the AIA was held, which was followed by the Rolt Memorial Lecture, 'Industrial Archaeology in Wales' presented by Peter White. Buffet lunch was then served and followed by a choice of visits — either the Gwydir lead mines, or the Pen yr Orsedd quarry and Dorothea engine. During the evening, a lecture entitled 'Coppermining on the Great Orme' was given.
Monday started with a visit to the Conway bridges, including a boat trip to view them from the water and underneath. We then studied the holiday resort architecture of Llandudno by a guided walkabout, which was followed by a visit to the Great Orme copper mines, seeing both pre-historic workings and 17/18th-century mining areas. The evening lecture covered the excavation and restoration of industrial monuments in Snowdonia National Park. Tuesday was again occupied all day with a succession of visits. We first looked at the engine sheds, workshops and station at the Talyllyn Railway, then went on to the Mawddach bridges, followed by the Glasdir copper mines. The evening lecture was about transport preservation in North Wales.
A visit to Porthmadog harbour followed by a journey on the Festiniog Railway to Blaenau started Wednesday's outings. We then had the choice of either some further quarry investigations or a tour of a water-powered fulling mill, a textile mill and museum, and a panoramic view of Blaenau with a lecture on its growth from the very top of an extremely high slate waste-tip. The two groups came together again to see the Pant yr Afon hydro-electric power station. Archive films of Welsh industry were shown in the evening. The Thursday excursion covered the Parys Mountain copper mining complex, Amlwch harbour, Llynon windmill actually grinding cereal, and the Holyhead Breakwater quarry with an interpretive lecture.
By this time your reporter was tired out so he did not go on the stone quarry visits scheduled for the final Friday! The whole programme had been co-ordinated by the AIA Conference Secretary, David Alderton, who as usual had done a first-class job. It was a stimulating week, full of variety, information and technical interest, in the company of like-minded people. The full conference fee was not really expensive (certainly less than many package one-week holidays) and definitely represented very good value-for-money. Alan Birt
Mary Mills has started an interesting subject with her article on chalk mines; there are many other topics about underground Chislehurst which concern GLIAS (see GLIAS Newsletter December 1996).
I do not know who worked the mines in Lubbock Road, but the well-known caves further south by the station were apparently worked as Blundell's lime works. These were advertised in 'Bromley Record' 1/11/1862 as established in 1800 near the caves. On 1/1/1864 W Blundell stated that he would continue the business long carried on by his late father and on 1/7/1864 advertised as Blundell's Flare and Tunnel lime works. My reason for mentioning this is that it establishes a more explicit link with the Greenwich area than the one suggested by Mary. On 1/11/1868 the advertisement read: 'Chislehurst Lime Works (late Blundell's), Bromley Hill, Chislehurst. Thomas Nichols begs to inform the Public that he has taken the above works in connection with his Lime Works at New Charlton, Woolwich. The best description of Flare and Tunnel Lime, Flints, etc.' (Several roads in this area have been renamed, but Bromley Hill was presumably the road now known as Old Hill.) Greater antiquity was claimed on 1/8/1869: 'Blundell's Chislehurst Lime Works. Chalks, Flints, Sand. Established 1706.'
The largest artificial excavations in the Chislehurst area are the two railway tunnels between Grove Park and Elmstead Woods. The first was made in the 1860s for the South Eastern Railway's cut-off from Lewisham to Tonbridge.
On 1/9/1863 the 'Bromley Record' reported that the tunnel near Bromley was being cut night and day six days a week, and on 1/3/1865 that the last brick was laid on 30 January and a celebratory dinner was held in the tunnel. Whitaker ('Geology of the London Basin' 1872) said that much Oldhaven sand was thrown out of the shafts of the tunnel, but Gray ('South Eastern Railway') states that Scott, the owner of Sundridge Park, forced the SER to build the tunnel without intermediate shafts. Whitaker may have written 'shafts' when he meant the tunnel mouths, but he was a careful observer and reporter. Does anyone know whether the tunnel has any ventilation shafts?
Towards the end of the century, the SER obtained powers to widen the line to four tracks to Orpington, and this required a second two-track tunnel on the west side of the original. Geologists made several visits to these works, for example the Geologists Association visited the area on 27/4/1901 and found that the new tunnel was being driven from the north, and by then was 300-400 yards long. At the north end the top was in London Clay, but most was in the Blackheath beds (the term which had replaced the Oldhaven beds in geological writing). There was at least one working shaft at that time, and this is confirmed by the report of a visit by the Croydon Natural History and Scientific Society on 11/5/1901.
Next year things went wrong when the new tunnel began to fail. Contemporary copies of 'The Railway Magazine' chronicle events precisely; signs of failure were seen on the evening of 17 July at the point where the line passed under the highest part of the hill (85ft deep to the tunnel), and the line was closed next day. The 'Bromley Record' of August 1902 reported that the partial collapse of the Chislehurst tunnels had been inspected for the South Eastern & Chatham Railways by Sir Benjamin Baker. In the old tunnel there was some severe flaking of the brickwork on the side of the new tunnel and for a short length on the crown; next to the affected area there were vertical cracks in the new tunnel. The cause was the 'compressible nature' of the soil between the tunnels and the remedy an invert to spread the load. By September, 'quite an army of men' was at work, but the tunnels were unlikely to open before October. The October issue included an interview with Percy Tempest, the chief engineer of the SECR (who lived in Chislehurst). He expected that the tunnels should reopen about 1 November; the new tunnel was opened for goods traffic from midnight on 31 October and to passengers on 3 November. The old tunnel presumably remained closed until the completion of the widening.
As part of the widening work, a new station was built at Elmstead Woods and the southern part of the old tunnel was opened to make room for the platforms north of Elmstead Lane. When the Geologists Association visited the site on 4/10/1902 they found that the removal of the southern end of the tunnel had left convenient terraces at various heights from which they could study the strata.
Lime burning was not the only extractive industry in Chislehurst. Further east (confusingly, in the area known as Chislehurst West) there were at least two brickworks on London Clay. In Red Hill, Joseph Pascall appeared in Kelly's Directory for 1862 as a brick and tile maker and potter; by 1870 the firm traded as George & Amos Pascall and later as Pascall Bros. (Red Hill, Chislehurst; also Bromley and St Mary's Cray). In 1899, E A Webb, G W Miller and J Beckwith wrote in 'The History of Chislehurst' that 'proceeding up Red Hill — now generally called White Horse Hill — we pass on the left Pascall's Tile Works, recently closed owing to the death of its proprietor.' Pascalls appeared in local directories in 1897 but not 1898. Further north, on the west side of White Horse Hill, by 1901 directories show White Horse Hill Brickworks (A T S Carter Ltd) but there seems to have been a brickyard here earlier. It had closed by 1930 but probably quite recently, because it was still shown on maps.
Sand was also extracted. Whitaker (1872) noted a large old pit in Thanet Sand on the south of the road to Bromley (ie, Old Hill) ¾ mile west of Chislehurst church. In 1866 he found that its floor was the layer of hard chalk which served as the roof of the galleries at Camden Park.
Mary also mentioned deneholes (see GLIAS Newsletter December 1996), though not in connection with Chislehurst. There have been various reports of deneholes in the area, but they tend to be confused with naturally occurring swallow holes and holes formed by the collapse of underground workings. For example, the Chelsea Speleological Society mention a funnel-shaped hole in the garden of 'Samphire', Old Hill, and various depressions in a wood 30 yards away above the caves, including a 40ft shaft. The CNHSS found during their visit on 11/5/1901 that the wood above Chislehurst caves was full of subsidence pits where Thanet Sand had fallen into the caves. Whitaker ('Water Supply of Kent' 1908) recalled that he had noted swallowholes many years before, on the Chislehurst chalk inlier before it was built on, but suspected that many of them were the result of man-made pits or subsidence into the mines.
Webb Miller and Beckwith mention that 'A discovery of a dene-hole was made in 1857 at a smaller quarry (than the one at Chislehurst caves) about a quarter of a mile to the west of the Bromley Road, at the foot of Camden Park. The excavation, from having lain in the path of winter torrents, had become filled with debris since a very early period. It was discovered by a labourer engaged in making cuttings into the face of the cliff for lime-burning, having struck his pick-axe through the chalk wall at its base.' The pit is shown on OS maps on the SE edge of the Camden Park site, but the British pottery and animal remains found in it suggest that it was earlier than dene-holes. Michael J O'Connor
Last month — to my surprise — our editor headed my article on the possible gas-making plant at Liptrap's Distillery as 'Whitechapel Gasworks' (see GLIAS Newsletter December 1996). Now the Bible of every London gas historian is E G Stewart's Historical Index — and he had something rather different under that heading. Stewart listed two Whitechapel Gasworks — neither of them Liptrap. First he listed one in 'Castle Alley', and a second, in Goulston Square. As his source of information for both of these Stewart gives Sterling Everard's History of the Gas Light and Coke Co. Everard gives no references and both seem to have had access to information which I have been unable to trace. This very early gas company has left no records and its existence can only be traced by brief inferences and comments. I suppose that some research and a lot of walking round the site has given me some doubts about what Stewart and Everard had to say on this subject.
Goulston Square was a widening half way up Goulston Street, E1. A semi-derelict building now covers its area — behind it is the site of the 1851 Whitechapel Baths (a pediment saying 'Wash House' is still to be seen in Old Castle Street which runs parallel). Castle Alley is now under the buildings of City Guildhall University but ran from Whitechapel High Street between Old Castle and Goulston Street to the rear of the baths. These two early gasworks must have been very close, to say the least of it. Castle Alley had an earlier name of 'Moses and Aaron Alley' and it is still listed as such in the ratebooks of 1818. The St Mary's ratebooks show a 'Gas Light Co in Whitechapel High Street next to the entrance to the alley way. The sewer rate books show a Gas Light Co around the corner in Goulston Square (on the next site there was a 'Mr Grant' — why is there so often a Mr Grant in the vicinity of early London gasworks?) I have not found a ratebook which gives two gasworks.
The sites are so close as to throw considerable doubt — in my mind at least — as to whether there were two completely separate works. In those days factories took up a much smaller space than would seem reasonable to us and here in the inner city everything was huddled up to everything else — there was at least one sugar refinery in Goulston Square in 1815. I very much doubt if either Everard or Stewart ever went to Whitechapel to see how close together these sites really are.
We don't know who opened these works — the mysterious Mr Grant perhaps? Stewart says that the Castle Alley works was built by 'J Peto' — was he perhaps a connection of Henry Peto of Peto and Grissell. In 1815 the owners became the Aldgate Gas Light and Coke Co and they then built the Goulston Square works. Or was this in fact an extension and re-equipping of the existing works?
In 1816 the Aldgate Gas Company approached Aaron Manby, the Shropshire ironmaster, for gas making equipment. They wanted it 'on the same plan as the old gas company' and he was also approached by the 'Whitechapel Company' (are they the same, or different?) Stewart says that the equipment at Whitechapel included a 'Clegg collapsible tent gas holder' — this must be the 'flexible' gas holder which was sold to a George MacKintosh in 1820 — described as 'two large canvas bags of about 15,000 cubic feet each — a blacksmith's forge placed near to one of them'. This Mr MacKintosh was the man who built a gasworks in Limehouse and who Stewart and Everard both assume was the contractor who built the docks — but his name was not George.
The Aldgate Company was taken over by the Blackfriars based City of London Gas Light and Coke Company in 1819. The reasons for the take over seem, inevitably, to have been financial. In November 1818 Mr Peto told the City of London Gas Company Board that he needed money quickly because Mr MacKintosh was suing him for a large sum of money, that it would come to trial next Monday, and that 'his character would be injured'. Was the story of the Aldgate Gas Company the usual one of fraud and incompetence?
Stewart says that the City of London Company closed down the Aldgate works in 1823. The superintendent had been a Mr Gronous — described, by Everard, as 'a half-pay naval purser'. He was kept on and eventually became superintendent at Blackfriars — despite, as Everard again records, a spell in a debtors' prison in the 1820s.
Although Stewart calls these his two sites 'Whitechapel' everywhere else they are called 'Aldgate'. In reality Goulston Square and Castle Alley are in Aldgate not Whitechapel. There were probably a number of such gas making plants around. There was also a Mr. Neville of Whitechapel from whom Mr Herepath bought Oil Gas before 1826 (?). Ten years earlier, in 1806, a Mr Desanges had been making gas in nearby Spitalfields. The Bow Oil Gasworks is sometimes called 'The Whitechapel Company Works'. In the early part of the last century Aldgate, Whitechapel, Mile End and Spitalfields were a ferment of innovative small works and inventors — engineering, chemicals, sugar. Gas lighting was one of several exciting new technologies and why shouldn't many East End boys have a go at making it for themselves? Sources apart from those mentioned in the text are: IGE archive letters, Select Committee report by W Congreve, F A Winsor, Mr Nicholson's Attack, and, Report of Enquiry into Oil Gas 1826, and a walk round the area itself which provides the most interesting information of all. Mary Mills
AIA visit to Poland
The AIA 1996 overseas visit to Poland was a great success. Applications for places far exceeded the spaces available and even the waiting-list had to be curtailed!
From London the coach travelled to Harwich where some further members joined the group. After an overnight trip across the North Sea, we sailed up the River Elbe to Hamburg during a sunny morning, passing the Kiel Ship Canal entrance on the way. From Hamburg the coach took us to Berlin via Lauenburg where we visited the maritime museum and then had lunch by the oldest canal lock in Europe, which is of circular shape. The canal dates from the late 14th century.
Having stayed overnight in Berlin, we travelled east and crossed the River Oder into Poland, journeying along the main Moscow-Berlin Highway — a rather grand title for a single carriage-way road! On the way we saw three 19th-century postmills which have been preserved on a public access site. We stayed in a hotel at Ciechocinek which was formerly a health and recuperation centre for high-ranking CP officials. The following day we visited a working salt works, still using medieval technology and coal-fired salt pans; the mainline railway station and three roundhouses at Bydgoszcz, where many steam locomotives were parked in the open, not having steamed for many years; a metre-gauge tram depot; and then the narrow-gauge railway system at Znin. The other end of this line is at Wenecja, where we found an interesting narrow-gauge railway museum. We stayed at Ciechocinek again that night.
Next morning we left for Warsaw. On the way we looked at a huge twelve kiln pottery at Wloclawek, now disused and in very poor state, and then examined the Wyszogrod Bridge over the River Vistula. This is the longest wooden bridge in Europe at two kilometres in length.
We watched the maintenance crew re-laying reed mattresses around the bridge piers to protect them from scouring — another survival of medieval technology. On our arrival at Warsaw we visited the gasworks museum which has preserved much of the equipment and is well-cared for.
The two gasholders were encased in brick-built towers with roofs; this was necessary so that the inside of the structures could be steam heated in the extreme winter cold to prevent the water seals from freezing. That evening being free, many of us toured the extensive Warsaw tram system with a two-hour ticket, which cost only the equivalent of 25p.
A visit to Warsaw Waterworks started the new day. This was built by a British engineer in the 1880s. The railway museum housed at the terminus of the old Vienna-Warsaw Railway provided much to interest us, from a vast range of locomotives and rolling stock to well-displayed exhibits in the museum cases, covering the social history of the line. On then to the narrow-gauge railway at Rogow where traffic is received from the adjacent standard-gauge line. The standard-gauge goods wagons are carried on narrow gauge flats in 'piggy back' fashion, a system not uncommon the other way round, but the first time the writer has seen 'standard on narrow'. A Hoffman kiln at Strykow brickworks, at which we observed the coal-firing techniques, completed our day before arrival at the textile town of Lodz. Our tour guide, Prof Ray Riley (formerly of Portsmouth Polytechnic) and Dr Anna Niznik, our interpreter, are members of the academic staff at Lodz University.
After a restful night in a superb hotel we toured the town (known as the Polish Manchester), looking at numerous textile mills, many now closed down, but we could see some interesting parallels with Manchester. Then on to the Tram Shed on the outskirts of Lodz, where we examined the rolling stock, especially some old four-wheelers which were stored awaiting disposal.
At Srock we were given open access to a derelict post-mill, the machinery of which was of great interest and then on to Sulejow where we examined two 19th century limekilns of conical shape and quite large size, which were working until the mid 1980s. That night was spent in a hotel converted from a monastery, the rooms being the cells formerly used by the monks. (The picture on the wall of my room showed a nude lady, but in tasteful pose; was it left over from former times, perhaps?)
Next day started with a visit to Maleniec Forge, a museum of early machine shop tools operated by two large water-wheels. It is now kept in good order as student projects by the local polytechnic university. Then on to some more limekilns, four of which were six-sided brick-built structures, again 19th century but now derelict. From there we saw the Poreba blast furnace charging tower, said to be of 1798 vintage and then the Tarnowskie Gory mining museum. That night we stayed at a hotel in Katowice, in the centre of the Silesian coal and iron region.
The following morning we visited several coalmines and saw pithead gear, winding engines and compressors, all steam driven. Then at Szopienice we looked around a non-ferrous smelting works which produced copper, zinc, silver and lead. It was closed in 1970 because of the horrendous pollution being caused. The 1908 zinc smelting shed, a wooden(!) building, enclosed long rows of horizontal fireclay retorts about the size of an earthenware drainpipe, stacked three high. There was zinc and ash debris still in some of the retorts, untouched since closure some 25 years ago. We then toured the rolling mills which process zinc brought in from elsewhere into roofing sheets and printing plates, the rolls being operated by five German steam engines dating from about 1905. Following this, we viewed the company's own museum, which showed a range of informative displays.
At Swietochowice the next morning, we went to another zinc rolling mill still in full operation and looked at casting tables, reheating furnaces and steam engines powering the rollers, all some 100 years old. Later we visited the Krolowa Luiza coalmine at Zabrze, recently closed but now a mining museum and working training centre for young miners. We went underground and saw coal cutters (British made) in action, actually cutting into the coal seam (something which Health and Safety would prevent visitors seeing here in the UK!) Overnight we stayed in Wroclaw and then proceeded back to Berlin, again via Frankfurt-an-der-Oder.
A free evening in Berlin enabled many to see the night life and then a morning journey brought us to Hamburg where we had three hours to see something of this city. Another overnight trip on the ferry brought us back to Harwich at lunchtime. It was a splendid 12-day visit on which we saw a great variety of interesting IA topics. The cost was fairly expensive, but nonetheless well worth the money. Alan Birt
Demolitions: Trico factory, Western Avenue and Cannon Cinema, Harrow
Two departures from the London scene took place recently.
The former Trico factory on the Western Avenue which has been empty for some years still stands forlornly awaiting the demolition men. The company making automotive products particularly windscreen wipers possessed a wonderful pair of cast-iron gates, fashioned with a pattern of windscreen wipers at various angles across a rectangle surround. Mysteriously, these have suddenly vanished and it is to be hoped that they have found safekeeping in some part of the Borough of Ealing. Does anyone know?
Sadly the Cannon Cinema (formerly The Granada) in Harrow has now met its demise, a victim almost certainly of the new Warner multi-screen cinema just opened in the brand new St George's Centre in Harrow. This is to be particularly lamented because it possesses the only working Wurlitzer in a cinema in London — probably in the whole country. Until recently the organ had famous names playing it to full audiences. What will happen to it is anybody's guess now! Geoff Donald
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© GLIAS, 1997