Listing verified as genuine
Posted on 21st September 2015 / 1150
Power Type : Steam
Public or Private Site? : Public Access
Condition : Restored

Think London, think open sewers, think Joseph Bazalgette – and that’s where Crossness Pumping Station comes in!

It officially opened in 1865 and originally called the Southern Outfall Works.

The Great Stink of 1858 was the breaking point for parliament and action was taken. Cholera reached England in 1832 and it took them 10 years to identify the cause as contaminated drinking water and even longer to deal with the problem effectively. Bazalgette put forward the best poo-plan and they embarked upon the herculean task.

The plan was to move the effluent eastwards along a series of interconnecting sewers that sloped towards outfalls beyond the metropolitan area. Work on high-, mid- and low-level systems for the new Northern and Southern Outfall Sewers started at the beginning of 1859 and lasted until 1875. To aid the drainage, pumping stations were placed to lift the sewage from lower levels into higher pipes. Bazalgette’s plan also introduced the 3 embankments to London, in which the sewers ran; the Victoria, Chelsea and Albert Embankments.

The Bazalgette solution was only part of the improvement measures taken and didn’t make provision to treat the sewage in any way. It was only concerned with shifting it and keeping the Thames clean; they were of course still extracting their drinking water from the Thames!

The success of these measures can be gauged by the fact that there was just one final outbreak of cholera in London in 1866 – just one year after the pumps started at Crossness.

This gorgeous ornate Victorian building is now listed (grade I), but the chimney was demolished. All 4 of the original mighty beam engines (built by James Watt & Co. to Joseph Bazalgette’s designs and specification) are still in situ. They are called “Victoria”, “Prince Consort”, “Albert Edward” (the Prince of Wales) and “Alexandra”. They are single cylinder rotative beam engines (with fly wheels) and lifted the sludge 30 – 40 feet.

Guess what! The 12 Cornish boilers consumed 5,000 tonnes of Welsh coal a year!

Everything about this place is classic Victorian unrivalled splendor. The gorgeous Romanesque-style buildings, the ornately crafted Watt Beam engines and the elaborately celebrated interior! It is on par with some religious architectural celebrations! Go there and stare; you’ll be amazed!

The steam up days are advertised on their website HERE! as are details of their ongoing restoration programme.

 

The Crossness Engines Trust. The Old Works, Belvedere Road, Abbey Wood, London. SE2 9AQ

Crossness Sewage Pumping Station

Think London, think open sewers, think Joseph Bazalgette – and that’s where Crossness Pumping Station comes in!

It officially opened in 1865 and originally called the Southern Outfall Works.

The Great Stink of 1858 was the breaking point for parliament and action was taken. Cholera reached England in 1832 and it took them 10 years to identify the cause as contaminated drinking water and even longer to deal with the problem effectively. Bazalgette put forward the best poo-plan and they embarked upon the herculean task.

The plan was to move the effluent eastwards along a series of interconnecting sewers that sloped towards outfalls beyond the metropolitan area. Work on high-, mid- and low-level systems for the new Northern and Southern Outfall Sewers started at the beginning of 1859 and lasted until 1875. To aid the drainage, pumping stations were placed to lift the sewage from lower levels into higher pipes. Bazalgette’s plan also introduced the 3 embankments to London, in which the sewers ran; the Victoria, Chelsea and Albert Embankments.

The Bazalgette solution was only part of the improvement measures taken and didn’t make provision to treat the sewage in any way. It was only concerned with shifting it and keeping the Thames clean; they were of course still extracting their drinking water from the Thames!

The success of these measures can be gauged by the fact that there was just one final outbreak of cholera in London in 1866 – just one year after the pumps started at Crossness.

This gorgeous ornate Victorian building is now listed (grade I), but the chimney was demolished. All 4 of the original mighty beam engines (built by James Watt & Co. to Joseph Bazalgette’s designs and specification) are still in situ. They are called “Victoria”, “Prince Consort”, “Albert Edward” (the Prince of Wales) and “Alexandra”. They are single cylinder rotative beam engines (with fly wheels) and lifted the sludge 30 – 40 feet.

Guess what! The 12 Cornish boilers consumed 5,000 tonnes of Welsh coal a year!

Everything about this place is classic Victorian unrivalled splendor. The gorgeous Romanesque-style buildings, the ornately crafted Watt Beam engines and the elaborately celebrated interior! It is on par with some religious architectural celebrations! Go there and stare; you’ll be amazed!

The steam up days are advertised on their website HERE! as are details of their ongoing restoration programme.

 

The Crossness Engines Trust. The Old Works, Belvedere Road, Abbey Wood, London. SE2 9AQ

Crossness Sewage Pumping Station
Power Type : Steam
Public or Private Site? : Public Access
Condition : Restored
Features
Reviews
There are no reviews yet, why not be the first?
Leave a Review
You must be to post a review.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Listings