Friday, 24 April 2015

Railway from London Bridge to Gravesend. Gravesend

Railway line from London Bridge to Gravesend
The line runs north eastwards into Gravesend Station

Post to the west Perry Street

Albert Place
This row of houses curved from Wrotham Road into Windmill Street. It was named after the Prince Consort. All this was now demolished for the Civic Centre.  The street name still applies to the area in front of the Civic Centre, now part of a pedestrianised square.

Arthur Street
Public Assistance Relief Office. This was next to No.19 and provided a front office for the workhouse
30 The Nine Elms beer house. Beer house which opened in 1849 and closed in 1973.
47 The Cricketers now the Roisin Dubh. This pub dates from 1842. The current name means Black Rose.

Brandon Street
The road was built between 1840 and 1860 and was originally called Station Street and is still show as such in 1865.  Apparently it was intended to site Gravesend Central Station, built 1849, at the southern end of this road. Named from owners of the land
26a Shri Guru Ramdass Gurdwara. Sikh temple.  This opened in 1993 in what had been Brandon Hall, which was a gospel hall.

Cambrian Grove
Named thus because the builder, Mr. Jenkin Jones, was a Welshman

Clarence Place
Was Lacey Gardens after a builder who was Mayor in 1850.
19 Gravesend Spiritualist Church.
32-33 from 1899 these were Gravesend & Milton’s children's "cottage homes". These were for children under the care of a local authority and housed them in what, hopefully, was a family setting. These are now private houses
Milton Mount Congregational Church. This was built in 1872 and designed by Sir John Sulman. It was built to house 750 people and designed so that the entire congregation could see and hear the minister. Milton Congregational Church was founded following a split of the Gravesend and Milton congregation when Minister Wilhem Guest and his followers moved into the newly built church which was also the chapel for Milton Mount College a school for the daughters of Congregational Ministers. In the early 1950s, the two congregations re-united.   For a while it was used as a petrol station, and then in 1967 was bought by the Sikh community.
Guru Nanak Darbar Gurdwara. Before 1955 congregations were held in a private house and the building used as the Gurdwara was bought in 1968. The community also supports sports and other activities.   This has now been closed and replaced by the new Sikh Temple to the west.  There Aare plans to replace it with flats.
Windsor Castle. This pub was present by 1841, closed in around 1888. It is said to have been ‘near the veterans club’.
Windmill Gardens. The lower slopes of Windmill Hill were bought by the Gravesend Corporation in 1889 and laid out as a garden and were opened in 1902. However a very similar layout is to that currently in place is shown on the 1865 OS map.
War memorial. This is the centre piece of a garden design apparently load out before 1865. The memorial was unveiled in 1922 and, having been damaged in the Second World War re-erected subsequently. It is a figure of winged victory holding out a laurel wreath in her right hand. It stands on tall plinth and two stepped base.
Obelisk. In the gardens is an obelisk for one of the town’s philanthropists, William Tingey. He died in and is seen as the real founder of Gravesend Hospital. The obelisk was unveiled in 1908.
Belle Vue Bowls Club

Clarence Row
Fleming Resource Centre. This is run by AGE/UK as their Gravesend Centre.

Cobham Street
Built between 1840 and 1860. Named for the Darnley family’s residence at Cobham Hall. Before development it was the site of one of James Clarke’s nursery and market gardens
Blackberry Lane. In 1761 because of the dangerous state of the main road the Turnpike Trustees decided to build a new turnpike road along the back of the north side of Cobham Street to Windmill Street. It was abandoned and the site sold in 1801when New Road was built.

Cutmore Street
Built largely between 1840 and 1860. Named from a Mr. Cutmore who worked on the development of the area as part of the Corporation.
29 Hearts of Oak. This pub was here in 1879 and closed by 1914.

Darnley Road
Until the 1796 this road was a field path closed by gates at each end. The northern gate was just south of the junction with Pelham Road.  The road is clearly named for the Darnley family. Before development it was the site of one of James Clarke’s nursery and market gardens
T.W.Walters sited on the south west side the railway bridge. General merchant and house clearances. Used to be Green’s.
Little green at junction with Pelham Road.  This is seen as the last remnant of Manor Farm. A large triangular pond lay at the junction.
Lynton House. This was south of Trafalgar Road and the nursery was alongside it. Between 1918 and 1926 it housed the juniors of the County School for Girls, and was later the Income Tax office. Demolished in 1970
117a Nursery garden with glasshouses. Lynton nurseries and tennis courts.
161 Kent and Essex Hotel. This large pub was set up in 1898 and stayed in business into the 1990s. It has since been demolished.
Four Went Ways. This is said to be the site at the cross roads with Old Road that In 1797, the body of William Wallace, one of the mutineers on the Nore who had shot himself, was taken from the belfry of St.George’s church to the cross roads and buried with a stake driven between the thighs.

Darnley Street
55 was a Primitive Methodist Chapel built 1863 the congregation having moved from the chapel in Stone Street. This is now converted to housing.

Dashwood Lane
St.Mary’s Mission Church. This corrugated iron church stood on the corner with Lynton Road South and was built in 1904. It was succeeded in 1938 by the church on Wrotham Road and became the church hall. It was not demolished until 1972.

Eden Place
This was scheduled for demolition in the late 1940s, and residents rehoused on the Kings Farm estate

Edwin Street
19 Little Wonder Pub. This was in place before 1851 and closed in 2009. It is now housing

Elmfield Close
Housing built on gardens at the rear of the doctors’ surgery

Essex Road
Before development it was the site of one of James Clarke’s nursery and market gardens
Grange Road
The Pavilion Skating Rink. The rink was opened in 1910, as a result of the roller skating craze
Drill hall this was the skating rink which was taken over by the military before 1920. In the late 1930s it housed:. 167th (Kent) H.B.Thames and Medway Heavy Brigade RA (T) and 313th (Kent) Anti Aircraft S/L Company RE (T). The hall was destroyed in 1944 Second World War bombing.
Joint Cadet Centre, This was opened in 2014 for Gravesend Army Cadet Force and Air Training Corps cadets from 402 (Gravesend) Squadron. It replaced previous cadet accommodation which was in a Nissen Hut built here after the war. It now has a shared drill hall, kitchen, and offices classrooms.

Homemead Close
Flats built in 1968 on the site of Peter Street which was slum cleared

Kent Road
Before development it was the site of one of James Clarke’s nursery and market gardens

Leigh Park Road
Portland Hall.  Until 1967 this stood at the western end the road in its own grounds. It was the dream house of William Aspdin, whose father had patented Portland cement. He enclosed an area with a high concrete wall with large gate towers and entrances, intending to build a large house designed by John Morris and Son of Poplar. It was completely cased in Portland Cement, with 11 bedrooms and Portland Cement statuary in the grounds. Only a fragment was built since Aspdin got into financial difficulties and went off to Newcastle. Although the house was built by 1852 the interior was never finished. It was sold in 1853 and partly demolished by he liquidators and hr remains became West Hill House. The remaining part of the estate was developed with houses and some was bought by the Water Company. Town houses now occupy the site of 'West Hill House'. Some stretches of wall remain.

Old Road East
Crossroads with Old Road and Windmill Street. Here until 1929 was the terminus of the Windmill Street tram service, and at an earlier date the turning point of the donkey rides from the Tivoli
Traffic lights - The first automatic traffic lights in the South-east were installed at the Old Prince of Orange cross roads in 1929.
Convent Grammar School. This was on the corner with Spring Grove and had previously been called Glenthorne which was the home of John Russell of the Gravesend brewery company.  It is said to have had a tunnel under Old Road to gardens south of the road.   The school left the premises in 1971 and there are now modern flats on the site.
Milton Mount Hall. This group of buildings is owned by the United ‘Reform Church and was built on the site of a house, itself built in gardens which had belonged to Glenthorne. It had opened as a Congregational Church in 1953.
Old Prince of Orange. On the corner of Old Road East and Windmill Street is the Prince of Orange inn, rebuilt on the site of old coaching house of the 18th century, with a history going back into the 17th. It was the coaching inn for London to Dover coaches which used the old road prior to the cutting of New Road in 1801, after which all coaches passed through the centre of the town. When these changes took place, an inn at the top of High Street became known as the 'New' Prince of Orange and the Old Road inn became the 'Old' Prince of Orange, the licensee moving from one to the other. Adjoining the Old Prince of Orange was at one time a cricket ground used for archery and prize fighting. 
Gravesend Corporation Feeder Pillar. Thus was built by the American “Western Electric Co. London” and installed outside the pub for the tramway extension in 1903 and supplied direct current until 1929. It was then used to supply street lights. Originally supplying direct current, it would have been converted to in 1966. It was decommissioned around 1993/1994 and has been at Amberley Museum since 2013
St Thomas Almshouses – Pinnock’s Charity. They are named for Henry Pinnock who was Portreeve in the late 16th. He bequeathed land for almshouses to the parish. The original site was on the corner of King Street and Windmill Street and in succeeding years there were further bequests. In 1894 it was decided to move to the current site.  During Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee year money was collected which was used for a Common Room and Lodge and more donations followed. More blocks were built in the 1930s, 1950s and 1960s. In the 1980's improvement plans were made but there were subsidence problems and it was discovered the houses were on top of a chalk pit. It was then necessary to redevelop the site with the help of the Housing Corporation.
Reeds Cottages. These were replaced by the almshouses. They were late 18th-amnd belonged to the parish. They were used to house cholera victims in 1832.

Old Road West
Victoria Pleasure Grounds. This included concerts and balls and rural sports including archery and bowls. The decline of Gravesend as a resort led to closure.
Cemetery. This was built on the site of the Victoria Pleasure Gardens, and using much of the same layout.  The cemetery chapels were once the Assembly Hal of the gardens.  The cemetery was established by Private Act of Parliament in 1838 promoted by London based speculators who were bankrupt by 1847. It was taken over in 1905 by Gravesend Corporation. Since then it has been extended to double its original site. The architect was Stephen Geary, a specialist in cemetery design – including Highgate.   He provided a bank of gothic catacombs at the back of the cemetery although these were never finished. The entrance lodges and gate were built in 1840 probably by Amon Henry Wilds. The cemetery gates have a triumphal arch composition in Brick rendered pink and included a flat for the superintendent. Originally it was decorated with sarcophagi and mouldings.
Wartime Mortuary. To cope with expected mass deaths from air raids mortuaries were set up a specially designed one still exists next to the cemetery. This had bays for storage of corpses and a viewing place for relatives to identify bodies. 
Dashwood Road Recreation Ground.

Pelham Road
Manor Farm. This belonged to the Earl of Darnley and land stretched from the Northfleet boundary to Windmill Street. The farm had buildings around three sides of a courtyard, and orchard to the south. It was demolished in 1890, and the remaining granary burnt down in 1911
2 the Earl of Darnley’s manor house was on this site.
5 Church of the Latter Day Saints. Church of the Latter Day Saints designed by Butler and Robinson
7 Bronte School. In 1905 William and Florence Vine established the school in Bronte Villas, Parrock Road for the education of their own children. In due course, their three daughters took over. They carried on teaching until the last Ivy Vine, died in 1977.  However, a parents’ committee was the formed to save the school and Peers and Susan Carter, ran it from then on. In 1999, the school moved to Mayfield and there have been a number of additions. In 2002 22 Pelham Road, was added for Bronte Nursery. Around 2012 a search was started for a suitable new owner and the school and nursery were acquired by Nicholas Clements.
Mayfield House. A concrete house with a conservatory built in 1875 by I C Johnson, to his own designs. Johnson, who claimed to be the first developer of Portland Cement, owned local cement factories.  The house was partly built as a demonstration of what could be done with concrete. He lived in Mayfield until his death in 1911 at the age of 101. Later it was used for educational purposes and in the 1980s was part of the Gravesend Branch of the North West Kent Technical College.
17 Surgery in what was Kent County Council offices
25 educational facility and Driving Test Centre.
36 used by the Red Cross and extended to the rear
Football ground on Girls Grammar School site. The site of the Girls Grammar School was farmland and later used for sports.
Gravesend School for Girls. The school was founded in 1914 as the County School for Girls and moved to the newly erected school on its present site in 1926.  The school was opened by the Duchess of Atholl, Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Education. The architect was W. H. Robinson.  The original building with its bell tower, central quadrangle and walled playing fields remains today. It is a selective school and is now Mayfield Grammar School, Gravesend to reflect the fact that they accept boys in the Sixth Form.

Portland Road
Portland Road, which rises steeply from Wrotham Road connects to Windmill Hill, this section of which was formerly known as West Hill.

Rathmore Road
Before development and the arrival of the railway this was the site of one of James Clarke’s nursery and market gardens
Gravesend Station.  The station was built by the South Eastern Railway who had parliamentary approval for a North Kent Line which would come from London Bridge through Lewisham, Blackheath and Woolwich, thence onto the Thames Estuary towns of Dartford and Gravesend and on to Higham and Strood. It opened in 1849, with a layout built to main line standards, upon a gentle curve. There were two platforms separated by a two line width track bed with lines acting as sidings. The main station building was behind the ‘’up’’ platform. It was built in brick designed by Samuel Beazley and had two-storey-high towers flanking a single-storey booking office. There was a flat for the Station Master. Until 1971 it had a rather portico but then the columns were boarded by British Railways. The original North Kent line to London Bridge ran via Woolwich and Blackheath, and there was one train every two hours, with one extra train up in the morning, and one extra one down at night. Changes were made before the SE&CR Joint Managing Committee was set up. This included turning the two central sidings into running lines. Single-storey extensions were installed on the up side building, and canopies were added and a105-foot-long roofed lattice footbridge was put in between the platforms. And an additional line was put in behind the up platform, to the west going to a turntable plus a water tower with a brick base building with arched windows. Another stabling siding was laid to the west beyond the road bridge and alongside the down line. In 1899 the station was named Gravesend Central. Extension of the third rail electrified network took place in 1930 and the platforms were extended at their western ends. Concrete bracket lampposts were use and Target name signs. The up side locomotive turntable was removed and a bay for stabling Port Victoria trains was formed. Steam-hauled services remained for services to the east and from 1932 to 1939 steam shuttles went t Allhallows-on-Sea. Platforms were lengthened again in 1954 and in 1965 the station became again just ‘Gravesend’. In 1961 the All Hallows service ended and with it went the water tank, although its base remained and was roofed.  In 1983 the station was refurbished with cleaned brickwork and restored platform canopies, and in 2007 it was planned to include lifts to a new footbridge.  High speed services to St. Pancras International began in 2009 and the station became an interchange for metro and high speed services. In 2013 a major overhaul of the station, involved the demolition of the water tank base the installation of a new large sheltered bridge with lifts and the removal of the early 20th footbridge.  The track layout was altered to allow 12 coach trains. Platform 1 became a London facing bay platform and takes terminating trains from London. A new central Platform 1 is on the site the former Up 'through' road. Platform 2 caters solely for coast bound services. The Gents WC has been reopened; there are new indicator screens and more shops. Gravesend is likely to be part of an extension for Crossrail. .
Goods, there was a goods shed on the ''down'' side, and a single-track wagon shed at the eastern end of the site. It closed in 1961 and in 1971 was tarmacked, buildings demolished and it became a car park. This is to become six storey major transport interchange building with a 396 space multi storey car park, a six-bay bus station, lots of tacky shops and ticketing facilities for train, buses and Fastrack.
Signal box. The layout was controlled by a small SER-designed signal box, at the eastern end of the site, beside the down line. When the layout was changed a second, larger signal box was put into a hole in the chalk beside the stabling siding. This had a brick base, and a timber top half, with SER sash-style windows. This cabin became No. 1 Box, and the older box was No. 2 Box, eventually closing in 1928. No.1. closed in 1971 when semaphore signals changed to colour light operation.
Car park.  A park for motor cars was laid out by Gravesend Corporation in 1957 on land used previously as allotments at the back of Cobham Street.

Rouge Lane
This lane winds up Windmill Hill, skirting the summit.  The name is probably really ‘Rough Lane’.
Queens Jubilee Beacon
Veterans’ Club. This is on the site of The Maze – one of the 19th attractions on Windmill Hill.  The club was built in 1954 for men over 60.

Saddington Street
Runs parallel to the south side of the railway and was previously called Farringdon Street.

Sheppy Place
Named thus because builder Wood’s foremen on the site came from the Isle of Sheppy
Baynard Castle This was a castellated Gothic house, built in the early 19th century by Edward Lacey, a former mayor, used later as a girls' school, and demolished in 1953.

Shrubbery Road
This was originally a lane running along a gully.
Millers Cottage. This became a beer house in 1842

The Grove
The Grove was originally an extension of the development of Harmer Street and was to be a gated road called Upper Harmer Street.
Flats on the west corner with Saddington Street. These are on the site of Harmer House School. This was run by W. H. Hedger. It later became Shaw and Sons laundry. The building has since been demolished and the flats built.
Shaw’s Laundries. This was started by Thomas Oswald Shaw in the late 19th. It eventually became a very large business with many outlets, and a large dry cleaning arm.  The vans had a distinctive ’gaiety girl' image. The business closed in 2002 when it employed 200 by which time it was part of a larger service group.
11 Gravesend Coop Society Education Offices. Later this became the Guru Nanak Day. Centre which was sold in 2012
13 Home for Friendless Girls. This appears to be Kendall House which had been set up to teach young women and help them start employment. In 1929 it was named after a Miss Kendall who was the supervisor of the home. In 1946 the house was sold and the home moved to Pelham Road
19-20 St. Andrews Presbyterian Church of England. This was established in 1870, with twin spires but was demolished to make way for motor showrooms in the early 1960s.  The stained glass was reused in St.Paul’s, Singlewell Road.
34 Gravesend Salvation Army. This extensive building dates from the 1966 but the army had had a presence in the town since 1883.
37 The Grove Dance Centre.
Tudor Lodge – this was on the junction with Parrock Street and may have been designed by Amon Henry Wilds for one of the speculators who built up Windmill Hill.

Trafalgar Road
St. James's Hospital. Before the passing of the National Health Act this was the Gravesend and Milton Workhouse, built in 1847 on Man of Kent Field by the Board of Guardians under the Poor Law Act of 1831 replacing a building in Stone Street. It was designed by John Gould with an H-shaped layout with an entrance block at the south with the board-room, Master's room, and school rooms. Kitchens and dining hall connected this to the main accommodation block at the rear. An infirmary was added in 1855, a children's' ward in 1882, and accommodation for lunatics in 1891. It later became St James' hospital. The site has since been developed as housing for aged and infirm people as St.James’ Oaks.
9 The Darnley Arms. Dates from at least 1848

Windmill Hill
An early name for the hill was Ruggen or Rouge Hill and it has been the site of a beacon. On the north east side was Furzy Hill where there had been sand pits. There was a mound called the Devils Mount and also Sandpit pond. The Windmill Hill Pleasure Ground Company bought a lot of the area and, along with others, set up many attractions. This got a bit out of control and there was a lot of public concern. The local corporation tried to buy it in 1843 but did not raise enough money. There was ongoing trouble.
Denehole.  Found by a workman digging a cess-pit, who used the traditional method finding it by falling down it.   The shaft was said be 55 ft. deep with two chambers at the bottom – one 18 ft high.   Roman potsherds, oyster shells and worked flint were found.
Windmill. It is thought there was a windmill here by the early 17th. A windmill here was burnt down in 1763 and another demolished in 1787. The one bunt down was rebuilt and remained. The camera obscura was moved here in the 1840s. A gallery was built round it in 1843. It was burnt down in 1902.
Gipsy House. This was next to the mill and was somewhere people could hire cutlery and buy drinks.
Mill Barn – somewhere else people could buy drink.
Observatory. This was built in 1836 by Thomas Smith from Dockhead. It had a spiral staircase to a flat roof with a camera obscura. There were also kitchens, refreshment rooms and bedrooms.
Belle Vue Tavern. This originated from the purchase of the hill by London based speculators, Smith and Snow.  They commissioned Amon Henry Wilds to draw up plans for a pub and pleasure garden. The building dated from 1838 and there was a Camera Obscura on the roof. Nearby were a souvenir shop and a fairground with a shooting gallery.
Royal Saloon of Arts. Opened in 1839 in the camera obscura and then into a pavilion which was part of the pub. There were exhibitions of silhouettes.
Windmill Tavern. This had an archery ground for a while.
Granite blocks on the hill mark sites of a bomb dropped by a Zeppelin in 1915

Windmill Street
The road marks the dividing line between the ancient parishes of Gravesend and Milton.
46 Clarence Hotel and Tea Rooms was on the corner of Clarence Row.  It was later the Clarence Arms which opened in 1832 and closed in 1855. It was then used as a college and was demolished in the 1920s.
51 Salisbury Arms. Pub present from 1849 to 1862
55 Emmanuel Baptist Church. Built in 1843, to the designs of John Gould, with his father as builder. It is rendered with giant pilasters.
62 Milton Hall. This is on the corner with South Street. In 1855 this was built as a timber building, Tulley’s Bazaar-  a place of leisure and entertainment for tourists to listen to free music and buy souvenirs. Illuminated views of Italy and Switzerland could be seen as through a porthole and in the evenings there were concerts. Milton Hall was built in 1859, and has been used as a drill hall for the Local Artillery Volunteers, with a small cannon standing outside and in 1890, a grocery Milton Hall Stores, later it was a wine shop.. It has a stucco fa├žade with a curved pediment. In 1890 it was a grocery store called Milton Hall Stores.
77 The Clarence. This pub opened in 1855 as the Clarence Arms following the closure of the original. Recently refurbished and reopened in 2012 as The Clarence.
The Blue House. Around 1800 this was described as a dairy farm and the home of James and Hester Clarke who opened the local nursery and the market garden to the west of Windmill Street. A pub with this name opened here in 1803 and was renamed to The Blue Coat Boy in 1830. It closed in 1835 and Tivoli House stands on the site.
Sandybanks – Clarke’s Nursery. Land north of the Wingfield Road between Windmill Street and Wrotham Road as far as Woodville Halls was derelict and known as 'Sandybanks'. It had once been part of Clark's nursery. James Clarke lived at the Blue House on the site of what is now Tivoli House. He established a Nursery in the 1790's on the west side of the road. Here he grew saffron, and asparagus – which was shipped by river to London markets. Clarke also extended his activities as a grower to other local sites. By 1864 the business, under Charles Clarke, was in financial trouble and the Windmill Street land was mortgaged to George Arnold.  The property was sold in 1868 to builders by a younger generation of the Clarke family.
Tivoli House. This was originally the Tivoli Hotel opened in 1836. Known as Tivoli Tavern as a hotel, refreshment and ball rooms for the Windmill Hill Pleasure Gardens. It was later taken over by a Mr. Berkowitz and turned into a Jewish School – Tivoli House Academy – when it was extended. A small synagogue was built at the rear.  Mr. Berkowitz and his son became leading local citizens. The school was closed during the Second World War and moved to Harrow.  The building is now flats.
Fragments of the boundary wall to West Hill House survive on the corner of Leith Park Road. West Hill House was built by William Aspdin, but was unfinished when he went bankrupt and the materials were used to in Portland Villas
109 – 110- North House and South House.  This was once one house surrounded by iron fencing decorated with the town arms - originally part of the railings in front of the town pier.
132 Cygnet House. Council built office block, subsequently sold and is now housing.  This was previously the registry office. There is a mural at the entrance of a former registry office. It was created by Alan Boyson in 2009
133 A Police Station was built here in 1940. Civil Defence had wartime provision of static water tanks here as well as air raid sirens. It was demolished when a new Police Station was opened in 1975 by built by D. F. Clayton, County Architect.  This was closed in 2009
158 Queens Arms. This pub was established by 1836 and closed in 1963. It was demolished in 1968. It was on the edge of Albert Place.
Houses high on the slope of the hill were built during the 1930s, and are on the area once the gardens of the Tivoli hotel.

Wingfield Road,
The name dates from the 1880s, and recalls that of Gravesend's first Member of Parliament, Sir Charles Wingfield, in 1868. 

Woodville Gardens
Where Windmill Street and Wrotham Road join is the site of the 'pound', used in 1864 for the election hustings.  This area is now part of the square laid out in front of the Civic Centre and opened in  2011.
Burial Ground. This was a public garden which had formerly been a burial ground and a few of the old tombstones remained against the north wall.  The land had been acquired in 1788 by the churchwardens to supplement the old graveyard of St. George's. The site was closed for burials in 1855 and laid out for gardens. There is a plaque “This square is on the site of the former Woodville burial ground, an extension to St George's churchyard, consecrated in 1789.The original boundary of the churchyard is marked by the studs in the paving. The new square was officially opened on 19 July 2011. The gardens provide a large amount of public open space. In 1977 the area was laid out as a garden for the blind, provided by the Rotary Club in dedication of its 50th Jubilee
The Woodville Halls. These were opened in 1968 by the Duchess of Kent.  Part of the concept was to provide a public space between Wrotham Road and Windmill Street. a large underground car park was included The building was designed by architects H. T. Cadbury-Brown and Partners of London and the contractor was  G. E. Wallis and Sons Ltd.  of London. The Mayor's suite and Committee rooms link the two buildings. A foyer area is now shared with the Civic Centre
Civic Centre. A concrete panelled office block ‘to a good brutalist design’ by Brian Richards of HT Cadbury-Brown’s office of 1961-8 and with design input from Elizabeth Cadbury Brown.

Woodville Terrace
This terrace of housing was removed to make room for the Civic Centre and the new police station.  The houses dated from the 1840s in a private road.  They were eventually used Gravesend Council as offices.  The street was originally built on the site of a brickfield owned by a William Wood – hence the name

Wrotham Road
Part of the Gravesend to Wrotham Turnpike Road set up by Act of Parliament of 1825. It was de-turnpiked in 1879.  Previously, north of the Masonic Hall it was called Ruck Lane; south of this was Tadman’s Lane.
Clark’s nursery. Clarke had extended to five acres on the west side of Wrotham Road where Essex and Kent Roads now stand and extending as far as the Old Dover Road. 
1 Gravesend Rubber Company offices. Demolished in 1973
26  Prince Albert. This is at the junction with Zion Place. It was a Shepherd Neame house. It contained three organs which were used for nightly sing songs and concerts – it eventually lapsed for lack of a licence.
Masonic Hall. This was taken over by the Masons in 1906 and had been Ruckland
40 Wrotham Ale Shades. This pub was established in 1880 and closed in 1958. It is now demolished. A number of pubs in the Gravesend area have been called ‘Shades’ which seems to be peculiar to this area.
53 Man of Kent. This pub was established by 1842.  A Man of Kent comes from east of the Medway.
72 Wrotham Road Board Schools. This is on a bank on the eastern side is and, built in 1894, was the third of such schools built in Gravesend.
92 St.Luke's Hall.  This was built as a mission church for St. James's in 1890 y architect, Basset-Smith. It was used for community events including the Church Lads' Brigade, Sunday school and so on. It was demolished in 1964 and a clinic is now on the site.
Headquarters of the 402 (Gravesend) Squadron Air Training Corps. Built in 1956.  The cadets have since moved to the new combined cadet centre in Grange Road
97 Ashenden’s Nursery. George Ashenden had a nursery and florist here in a building with a dramatic white iron and glass frontage. This existed in the 1890s and was still present in the 1950s.   There is now housing on the site
111 Bat and Ball Cricket Ground. This was founded before 1854 for a County Club organised by Earl of Darnley – which led to acrimony over the path between the pub and the ground. It was used for county cricket and In 1849 Kent played an All-England Eleven in the grounds first first class match. It seems to have begun about 1845 as a private cricket ground for Ruckland House, and in 1853-4 the Earl of Darnley and others formed the North Kent Cricket Club with the Bat and Ball as its home ground.  Here the giants of the game have scored some of their great personal successes, Dr. W. G. Grace, Frank Woolley, Kenneth Hutchings, G. Jessop - Lionel Troughton, Kent's Gravesend captain, was also among them. From 1849 to 1971, the ground held 145 first-class matches for Kent, the last of which saw them play a touring team of Pakistanis.  The ground has also played host to 24 matches involving the Kent Second XI. In the 1900s the ground was bought by a local builder for building, but enthusiasts raised the money to buy it from him. In 1960 the Club got a 999-year lease at a peppercorn rent. Not only cricket, but bowls, tennis, and more recently, hockey, are played here. The ground is the home venue of Gravesend Cricket Club who play in the Kent Cricket League
113 Bat and Ball. The pub was present by 1862
From this point northwards the houses belong to an earlier date than those on the south, dating from the opening years of the 19th century.  Before the erection of the houses between Wrotham Road and Darnley Road, much of the ground was known as 'Man of Kent Fields', named after the licensed house on the corner of Arthur Street.
Pavilion Theatre. Around the area of Essex Road junction and to the south and west is the site of Thomas Eves’ The Pavilion Theatre. Eves was a nursery man who developed his nursery, inherited through his wife from the Clarke family who had had it for many years.  It had become the Subscription Grounds – flowers, walks and lanterns. There was a games area, and eventually the theatre. Eves was murdered and the land sold for building in the 1880s.  A thatched bandstand from the gardens is said to have remained until the 1920s
Brickfield. This was owned by Wood and Gregory in the 1860s and was south of Old Road on the west side of the road. Brickfield Cottages were in Old Road.
185b Ladies bowling club. This club had a grass rink here until the 1950s. It was on the junction with Old Road and has since been replaced by housing.

Zion Place
So named because it led to the Baptists’ Zion Chapel in Windmill Street which was built in 1843

About Gravesend. Web site
Bat and Ball Ground. Wikipedia web site
Bygone Kent.
Carley. The Gravesend to Wrotham Turnpike Road
Gravesend Historical Society. Transactions
Gravesend Station. Wikipedia. Web site
Gravesham Council. Web site.
Harker. The Book of Gravesham
Hiscock. A History of Gravesend
Kent Archaeology. Web site
Kent Rail. Web site
Lost Pubs Project. Web site
Phillip. A History of Gravesend and its surroundings
Pub History. Web site
Twentieth Century Society. Web site.
Workhouses. Web site

Saturday, 18 April 2015

Railway from London Bridge to Gravesend. Perry Street

Railway Line from London Bridge to Gravesend.
The line goes in a north easterly direction

Post to the west Springhead Road
Post to the east Gravesend

All Saints Road
Elim Pentecostal Church. In the 1930s the building here was the Springfield Gospel Hall.

Burnaby Road
Recreation Ground. Rosherville Park

Bycliffes Terrace
Flint-built houses which appear to have once been called White Post Terrace and later Pelham Terrace
Football field. A field near here adjacent to Campbell Road was used in the late 19h by Gravesend Ormonde football club, made up of local watermen. It later amalgamated with the Gravesend town club to become Gravesend United

Campbell Road
1 Campbell Arms

Cecil Road
Cecil Road Primary School. When it was built in 1909 it was called Cecil Road Board School and took children from infants up to school leaving age. It was and then the most modern of the elementary schools in the town and had cost £12,000. It was opened by the mayor, Alderman H E Davis. Staff were transferred here from Kempthorne Street Higher Grade School which then closed

Coyer Road
Northfleet Technology College.  This is in a new school building built in 2010 on the site of the previous secondary school, Northfleet School for Boys; previously Colyer Road Secondary Modern School.   Northfleet School for girls opened on a neighbouring site in 1937 and moved to a different site in Hall Road in 1950.
Denehole in the school grounds discovered in 1948 when a tree which had grown out of it fell. It was sealed with a brick cap.

Coopers Road
15 The Globe Tavern. This closed in 1976 and was demolished for new housing now on site.  They sold Shrimp Brand beers from Russell’s Gravesend Brewery
20 The Rising Sun Pub. This opened in 1854 and closed in 2012
32 The Jolly Gardeners Pub.  Closed long ago. 

Dover Road
Rail bridge – this angled bridge crosses the North Kent Line but at one time also crossed the London Chatham and Dover Railway line into West Street.
North Kent Line. This section of the line and the bridge appear to date from the late 1840s, and the kink in the road as it crosses the railway may be of the same date. The final two houses on the terrace on the south side of the road appear to follow a slightly different alignment.
Thames Road crossing. The bridge over the North Kent Line continues westwards to cross Thames Way, built in the early 21st on the line of the defunct Gravesend West Line.
Gravesend West Line Branch line. This line built in the mid-1880s passed under the Dover Road slightly to the north west of the North Kent Line. It appears to have been on a higher level than the existing Thames Way (which is in a cutting) since it had been on embankment to cross the North Kent line, to the south east, and yet passed under the road.
Perry Street Sidings – these were on the west side of the West Street line. Thus they were on the down side and allowed for overnight stabling of locomotives.  This area later became a coal yard.

Dover Road East
Fiveash Works – this is an old Tramway Depot. The main part of this site fronts onto Fiveash Road. However the entrance to the works from Dover Road was the exit for trams coming from the tramsheds onto lines laid in the road.
Copperfield “Academy”. This appears to be a very recent new name for Dover Road Primary School.  Dover Road School was opened in 1911.
Bridge Inn. This listed pub up was built in 1906 and closed in 1995. It was later used as an old people’s home. In 2006 it was burnt down and replaced by a modern building.  In
Huntsman Tavern. This 19th pub closed in 1969 and was replaced by flats
54-56 Builders yard and office. In the 1930s and later this belonged to Sid Bridger.

Fiveash Road,
Site of a smock-mill built by John Fiveash in 1795, who at one time worked the mill on Windmill Hill.
Tramway Depot. The original London Transport Northfleet depot was here and later became a factory. It was originally a depot for Gravesend & Northfleet Tramways. The first horse tramway here was opened in 1883 between The Hill, Northfleet, and St. James Church, Gravesend, - later extended to Trinity church. A short experimental electric line - the first in the south of England - was opened between The Hill and Northfleet station in 1889, but this closed a year later. The system was eventually electrified in 1902 and extended to Swanscombe and with a loop via Dover Road and Pelham Road, and a branch up Windmill Street to The Old Prince of Orange. In 1923 six of the original open-top trams had closed tops by Beadle Bros. of Dartford in 1923, the first public service vehicles in the area to have protection from the weather on the top deck. The first closed-top buses were Leylands, which trams in February 1929. The depot closed in 1929, - the first system in the London area to be abandoned. It was owned by British Electric Traction who took over Maidstone and District buses. It was taken over by London Transport in 1933 and closed in 1936. Its original entrance was from Dover Road.  It is now Fiveash Works occupied by a steel fabrication factory.

Glebe Road
The lane between Pelham Road South, Old Road, and Victoria Road was originally glebe land belonging to the church
The Coach Works. Motor repair and construction works. The site is now housing.

Gouge Avenue
New housing at the end built on the site of a building contractor’s yard.

Havelock Road
Gravesend/Northfleet boundary a passage follows the boundary line

Kendal Gardens
Housing built in an area on the edge of the Gravesend/Northfleet boundary.  After the Second World War this area was a chalk pit containing tanks.  On the east side was a light railway dating from the late 19th and operated by Tolhurst who had a cement works on the riverside west of Pier Road.

Mariners Way
One of a number of streets in an area of housing built on land used as a chalk pit for the Red Lion Cement Works.

May Avenue
May Avenue Industrial Estate. The Avenue is made up of industrial units and yard up.  These include Redeemed Christian Church of God. Palace of his Glory and a Homeopathic Health Centre

Mayfield Road
Gravesend/Northfleet boundary. A passage follows the Gravesend/Northfleet boundary

Mill Road
Named for the mill which once stood here at the end of Rural Vale.  This was a 50 foot tall Brick-tower windmill, built in 1840 by Richard Young. It was taken over in 1858 by William Boorman, who was a corn merchant in Milton Road and thus was known as Boorman's mill. It closed in 1894 and was demolished in 1916.

Napier Road
The Gravesend/Northfleet boundary runs from a passage by the Rose Inn as far as this road and then runs along it.

Old Perry Street
26 Six Bells. The pub claims to have originally been a coaching inn dating to 1760. Six bells were recast and rehung in St.Botolph's church in 1758

Old Road West
Old Road is said to have been the main road handling coach traffic between London and Dover – hence part of it is called Dover Road. After 1801 this traffic took the new road through Gravesend. Houses along the road were built in the late 19th. 
189 Pelham Arms

Pelham Road
The name relates to the Darnley family and specifically Lady Darnley but the name only dates from the mid 19th. It was earlier known as Manor Lane, from Manor Farm which was on its south- east side. It was also called Style's Lane from the name of a farmer and, later, White Post Lane.
61 White Post. The White Post pub was partly demolished in 2008 and following a fire completely demolished in 2009.  The pub is said to have had the look of a house and had a croquet lawn at the side. It only became licensed in 1846 when it took on the license of the Black Horse. It was built in 1844 and had been extended on the side and at the rear. It ceased trading in 2002. There is a large walnut tree adjacent to the site and a flint wall along the northern boundary of the former car park
White Post area – the area around the now defunct pub is said to be the centre of the original village of Gravesend.  A 19th writer says that glebe land here was marked out with white posts –hence the pub name. Land here was also known as St (or Queen) Mary’s Green
Site of St Mary's Chapel.  The Domesday Book refers to a church which is thought to have stood on a site near the rear of where the White Post pub stood and its successors remained there until the 16th.  In 1510 it was rededicated to St. Mary after earlier destruction by fire but there were complaints about its distance from the town for infirm people and others and it ceased to be the parish church in 1544. The last burial in its graveyard was in 1598. William Crafter made a sketch in 1822, of the churchyard from his survey of the site and when there were still some stone foundations. Since then Gravestones have been found nearby. The site was sold for in 1844 and then the White Post and the cottages were built. 
St.Mary's Green in front of St. Mary's church. Sometimes called 'Queen Mary’s’ Green,

Perry Street
Perry Street. This was an old village the name of which is first recorded in 1281. Perry may refer to pears.
1 Rose Inn.
29 Crown.  Pub which dates from the 1830s
All Saints Church. The population of Northfleet grew rapidly in the 19th and All Saints was built in 1870 to meet demand. The parish was created from those of the existing churches of St.Botolph and St. Mark. It ids said that this was down to the work of Rev.Gilling, the vicar of Rosherville, and funding from John Edmeades, the Rosher family and the Brenchleys of Wombwell Hall. The architect was James Brooks and it was built by a local firm, Thomas Blake of Stone Street, Gravesend. It is in Kentish ragstone. It is now an Anglo Catholic Church.

Rosebery Court
This court of modern housing appears to be built on the site of the Co-op Dairy. In 1838 a hoard of 552 coins, mainly Saxon were found here. It was thought they dated from between 814 and 878 A.D. buried with them was a silver cross with its decoration unfinished.

Rosherville Way
An extension of Thames Way, from which it diverges at a roundabout north of the Dover Road. It follows the route of an industrial railway which linked to the West Street line at Perry Street sidings.  It then ran northwards to Red Lion Wharf – then operated by Tolhurst & Sons Red Lion Chalk and Whiting Co.  It passes under London Road through a tunnel in the chalk.  It is part of a network of roads in the area on old railway lines built in the late 20th, early 21st.

Vale Road
78-80 Pair of cottages built in the early 19th. They are weatherboarded a slate roof
157 Murrells. This is an L-plan building made up of a two-bay hall with a cross-wing. There is a smoke-blackened crown-post roof, with the rafters sitting on double wall plates dated at 1409. It is thought to date from the early 15th or late 14th.  It is called Murrells from the family who lived there in the 18th.
177 Earl Grey Pub. This flint faced pub dates from at least the 1750 and claims to have been a coaching inn.  It is a Shepherd Neame house which also claims to have a poltergeist.

Victoria Road
Perry Street Conservative Club.

All Saints, Perry Street. Web site
British Listed Buildings. Web site.
Earl Grey. Web site
Cecil Road School. Web site
Gravesham Council. Web site
Hiscock.  A history of Gravesend
LeGear. Deneholes in the Gravesend area.
Lost Pubs Project, web site
Medway. City Ark. Web site
Northfleet Technology College. Web site
Oxford Archaeology. Web site
Six Bells. Web site
Stoyel and Kidner. Cement Railways of Kent.

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Railway from London Bridge to Gravesend. Northfleet Springhead Road

Railway from London Bridge to Gravesend
The railway continues south eastwards

Post to the east Perry Street

Camden Close
Modern housing on site of a recreation ground, previously an isolation hospital.
Isolation Hospital. This is shown on maps from before the Great War and still appears in street directories in 1939 with an address in Springhead Road.  It appears to have been a smallpox hospital built by Northfleet Urban District Council along with other facilities.

Chalk Pits
Church Path Pit. This pit now contains railway infrastructure.
Blue Lake.  Owned by Bevan's this was Portland Pit Quarry and was became a lake in 1933 when quarrymen hit natural springs 14 feet below the water table –and the lake formed overnight. It was polluted in 1974 when crude oil was pumped in following a breakdown in the APCM works. It had been used for water supply to the factory and as an emergency  reservoir in a drought.   Many people have died here by drowning or suicide. It is now used for angling and controlled by the Thameside Works Angling and Preservation Society. It is a natural spring fed lake of about 36.5 acres and varies in depth from 4ft to 48ft. there is a big white cliff running down the length of the lake called Railway Bank and on the other side is Tree Bank.
Saxon cemetery

Dover Road
Also known as Old London Road this part of Old Road running from Northfleet to Chalk and bypassing Gravesend Town Centre.
10 Northfleet Tavern. This appears to have been closed by the beginning of the 20th
24 New Shipwright Arms. Closed
41 Brewery Tap. This is Northfleet and District Traders Association club who appear to have been there since at least the 1930s.
39 Northfleet Brewery. Building of 1889 built for Pope & Co. by Bywaters of London.   The brewery originated with Henry Clark, aged 25 from Royston, who brewed at 9 Dover Road and 3 London Road, 1869 – 1880 in partnership with a Dover Edgell, Clark was replaced in the partnership by William Sutthery Pope and in 1885 it became W.Pope and Co.  They moved to this new building in 1890 and remained there until 1895 when they became the Northfleet Breweries Co. Ltd.  After 1897 the brewer was Barkway & Hitchcock, Northfleet Breweries until 1902 when they were again renamed as the New Northfleet Breweries Co. selling beer branded as ‘The Last Drop’.  The Dartford Brewery Co. took them over at the start of the 20th and continued brewing here until 1921
Congregational Chapel. The church moved here in 1850 and the church built in 1856. It is now United Reform.
117 Dover Castle. Dates from the 1850s and now closed.
St Botolph's School. This began as a National School near the church in 1838. In 1977, a new St Botolph's school opened here in large grounds – which appear to partly be the area of an infilled pit worked by the Red Lion Chalk and Whiting Co.
Dykes Pit. This lay south of the road east of no.245

Gravesend West Line. This railway line was opened by the London, Chatham and Dover Railway in 1886 and closed in 1953 to passengers and later to freight in 1968. On this square, coming from Southfleet it had crossed Springhead Road and ran parallel to what is now Waterdales. Much of this appears to be an urban woodland footpath.
Church Path Pit Rail link. This pit lies north of the North Kent Line and south of Church Path to the north.  Tramways from riverside cement works, owned by Bevan’s,  had been laid in the pit in the late 19th but had gone out of use as the pit, and that to the south, were exhausted. A rail link to their riverside cement works was installed in 1969 by APCM. This was a loop which connected to the North Kent Line north west of Northfleet station. The line to the cement works then passed through two tunnels under Northfleet High Street. Another tunnel to the west gave road access. The track was lifted in connection with the Channel Tunnel Rail Link (CTRL). In 2009 Lafarge, the then owner, wanted a new rail link and reinstatement work on some of the previous system was begun.  Later an arrangement was made to use some of this system for spoil from Crossrail works under Central London using the old cement works wharf.  Nearly three miles of new track was installed and, re-signalling was need on the North Kent Line. In Church Path Pit a single-track curved approach ran towards the Western Tunnel. At the portal a northward-facing siding was laid and double-tracks ran through the tunnel.
Church Path Pit. CTRL sidings. Berthing Sidings for CTRL rolling stock come from the spur from Ebbsfleet International.
North Kent Line connection with CTRL. A junction between the North Kent Line, and the cement works line, by then CTRL, was made in 2011.  There were signalling problems which needed to be resolved and meant a comprehensive re-design.

Shepherd Street
55-57 Prince Albert. This has now been converted to a children’s nursery.

Springhead Road
Was formerly called Leather Bottle Lane.
Barrack Field. Harp Field had been on the east side of Springhead Road in the area of York Road. It was acquired by the Government in 1806 although troops were camping here as early as 1763 and became known as Barrack Field.  Troops were quartered here during the Napoleonic wars.
St. Joseph’s Roman Catholic Primary school. This lies behind no.101 and alongside the railway.
Brook Vale Farm. This stood at Snaggs Bottom up to the late 19th.  Fields were sold the Northfleet local authorities and used for civic amenities
Northfleet Urban Country Park. The site was once orchards  and part of Brook Vale farm. In the 1940's, the site became a chalk pit. From 1957 it was the Northfleet Urban District Council refuse tip from which landfill gases ere vented from 1992. In 1996 it was turned into urban country park containing lake, woodlands, meadows, wetlands and trim trail, play area and toilets/kiosk/seating area. It was landscaped with the cleaned topsoil, to raise the level of the land by up to four metres.
Northfleet Cemetery.  In 1891 Northfleet Local Board of Health decided to provide a municipal cemetery They 15 acres of Brookvale Farm from the owner Mr Sayer for £2,700. James Walford was appointed as architect and building work was carried out by W H Martin of Gravesend. the first burial was in 1893. the cemetery has since twice been extended
Church Field. At the rear of the houses on the west side of Springhead Road was Church Field occupied by a disused quarry and the Blue Lake.
Snaggs Bottom. This is the area of the low point  of Springhead Road
Old Rectory. This is On the west side of the road At Snaggs Bottom. It  is a timber-framed hall house of the late 15th or early 16th, known as the 'Old Rectory'. It was probably the residence of the steward of the Rectorial Tithes which belonged to the Priory of Rochester  It is now used as offices.
Pump house for the Blue Lake                           .
Drill Hall. This was built in 1939 and became the site of local anti aircraft activity. This later became Springhead Sports Centre.
Entry to footpath along the line of the London Chatham and Dover Railway Line
Denehole.  A shaft was found during housing development. all of the original chambers had collapsed . The shaft still had the miner's footholds used to descend and ascend the shaft when it was being worked. An examination showed it was mediaeval.
Trading Estate on the west side of the road

Thames Way
The road was given its current route in 2007 in connection with the works to set up the CTRL line and Ebbsfleet Station.
North Kent Police Station

Vale Road
Gravesend and District Theatre Guild. This was set up in 1948 as a central body for local amateur dramatic groups. The Guild opened the Guild Theatre at Vale Road in 1991.

Bygone Kent
Gravesend Historical Society Web site
Gravesend Historical Society. Journal
Gravesham Council. Web site

Gravesend and District Theatre Guild. Web site
Green. Pubs of the Gravesend Area
Hoskins. History of Gravesend

LeGear. Gravesend Deneholes
Kent Rail. Web site
Lost Pubs in Northfleet. Web site
Millward and Robinson. Lower Thameside
SABRE. Web site
Thameside Works Angling and Preservation Society. Web site

Monday, 13 April 2015

Railway from London Bridge to Gravesend. Northfleet Stonebridge

Railway from London Bridge to Gravesend
The line runs south eastwards

Post to the west Swanscombe

Black Eagle Drive
The name of the road relates to a pub which once stood in Stonebridge Hill.
New housing on the site of the Paper Sacks factory.
Paper Sacks was set by Robinsons, a large Bristol based paper company.  They had becomeinvolved with a USs company making paper sacks for cement and took the idea to APCM.  They initially set up a works at Kenysham and then moved production in 1930 to Northfleet .There was a siding into the works from the main line railway and In 1948 a new factory was built here with a pre stressed concrete shell roof. In the 1970s following a merger with the Dickenson paper group they became the Dickenson Robinson Group, and in the 1980s were taken over by the Swedish Kornsas company. The factory closed in the early 2000s, the site bought be developers and housing built.

College Road
This was once called One Tree Lane
Huggens College. John Huggens was a corn factor and philanthropist who. Built this College for old and impecunious gentlefolk. He had a cement works at Sittingbourne, and was a hoy owner who has made a lot of money on grain shipments. He built the college, designed by W.Chadwick, in 1847. Residents had a weekly allowance of and a ton of coal each annum. It was demolished in 1968 and new bungalows and a new chapel built on part of the site, and the remainder sold to the Council, who used it to build Wallis Park.  The chaplain's house, which is all that survives of the original college, is said to have originally been a farmhouse
Football ground. This was south of the College on the west side – and appears to be still present, albeit possibly derelict.
Northfleet Lawn Tennis Club. On the east side post Second World War
The Ebbsfleet stream provides the western boundary to Northfleet.  Historically it was called The Fleet.  It was navigable by small craft in Roman times.
Northfleet villa. A substantial Roman villa complex was discovered in 1911 on the west bank of the Ebbsfleet. The earliest part was built in the early 2nd and later expanded with construction a two large aisled buildings, a bath house and a river-side wharf
Tide Mill. A 6th timber-built water tide mill discovered close to the Northfleet villa. The water ran from the pond through two square funnels, made of hollowed-out tree trunks, and drove two horizontal paddle wheels. Each wheel was connected by a shaft to a pair of millstones on the milling floor above.  Boats could ne load and unloaded from a jetty alongside the tailrace. The mill stood on its own in grassland dotted with trees.
Buildings. Eight Saxon sunken feature buildings were found in and around the Northfleet villa complex, and a further four nearby.
APCM sports ground. This took up much of the area now covered by Ebbsfleet Station. Some methane was burnt off here in the 1980s.
Northfleet Pleasure Park. This lay alongside the railway on the south side. It had a bandstand, a putting green, children’s swings, slides and roundabouts with the Ebbsfleet running along the perimeter and a footbridge leading to the APCM sports ground. It was opened in 1909 and in the early days children used to paddle and play in the Ebbsfleet, until the construction of the sewage works There was a brick park keeper's hut along with a drinking fountain. It closed in 1971 when the new railway sidings for Northfleet Cement Works were built on the site.

Ebbsfleet walk
Modern housing on what Station Street

Galley Hill Road
Dartford Strood road through Gravesend, built by KCC in 1926
Walls – changes in brick work showing place where an industrial railway from the S.E. main line to riverside wharf passed below, having circled the Paper Sacks Factory.

Grove Road
Runs parallel to and east of the Ebbsfleet Creek
Grove House.  Grove House is a 20th office block now occupied by a dentist. The house originally on the site overlooked the cement works and may have been built for Butchard Francis, owner of Tower Cement Works to the east. It was later the home of William Aspdin.  In the Second World War it was the headquarters of Northfleet Home Guard. It is said to have been standing, although derelict in 1965.
Territorial Army Hall. This was where commando raids were planned and led from during the Second World War. It was built as a drill hall in 1934 for the Kent Fortress Royal Engineer Territorial Unit, searchlight training. It was also used by the St.John’s Ambulance service. There was a foundation stone near main door. There was a 25 yard rifle range alongside. The site is now industrial units.
Tramway. This crossed the road north of the Drill Hall. It came from the Bevan Cement works to the east of the site and curved round northwards to riverside wharves
Blue Circle Heritage Centre. This was in this area in the 1980s and 1990s.
Old Foundry. This dates from the 19th and is partly on the site of a brickworks. A brick building dates from around 1870 and follows the original line of the mill pond.  The site is on the west side of the road and a number of works are there, although the foundry itself left in 2014.
Thames works. Cardboard box factory currently on site. This appears to be on the site of a square of housing called Warwick Place.
Cement works. The gates to this works appear to be still extant in Grove Road. Works on the site was operated 1798-1846 by Parker and Wyatt; 1846-1847 by Jones and Aspdin; 1848-1851 by Robins, Aspdin and Co.; 1851-1900 by Robins and Co. Ltd; 1900-1910 by APCM (Blue Circle). It was originally occupied by James Parker, who had invented Roman Cement and made it here in the late 18th, using septaria nodules from the Isle of Sheppey.  Under Wyatt cement manufacture employed 12 men and there was an output of 700 three bushel casks a week.  In 1846 William Aspdin moved here from Rotherhithe. Clinker was ground by the tide mill at the head of the creek and Parker also used a windmill. There were five wet process bottle kilns south of the creek to which three were added in 1847, and there were twelve by 1876. Aspdin left and it was then managed by R. A. Gibbons. Most of the plant was relocated north of the creek and a new wharf built, abandoning the old site. By the time of the APCM takeover, its operations were coordinated with Bevan’s, and the kilns were phased out but the wharf remained in use. Some structures still remain including an intact and much-restored bottle kiln claimed as one of Aspdin’s, although it was later. The area used north of the creek later became part of an oil depot
Bevan’s Works. This was to the east of the earlier works and was operated in 1853-1900 by Knight, Bevan and Surge, and 1900-1970 by APCM (Blue Circle). It was built on the site of the parks and orchards of The Hive. When Aspdin left the Robins company he sold the technology to a whaler, Thomas Sturge. This works was second only to Swanscombe in size in the 19th and early 20th. It was built on an old brickfield adjacent to Robins on the east. Sturge secured a huge swathe of chalk land to the south. The plant used wet process bottle kilns throughout, Rotary kiln installation followed after APCM was set up. The original rotary kilns were cleared in 1922 to make way for the largest APCM installation of the time. Some of the kilns here were the largest in Britain until overtaken in 1929. With its huge reserves of chalk it remained one of Blue Circle’s main sites for forty years. It was shut down in 1970, with much of the cement handling and wharfage kept in use, incorporated into the adjacent Northfleet site. It never had any rail link, and had the best deep water jetty on the south bank. Chalk came to the plant via a tramway.
Bevan’s Beehive Kiln. This kiln sometimes described as an Aspdin beehive kiln or as a mid 19th century bottle kiln, is preserved as an ancient monument. There are also the remains of rails which ran from it to other processing areas.
Public Slipway. This is at the bottom of College Road and is excavated as part of the Northfleet Harbour Project.

High Street
175 Cooper's Arms. This pub is now a chip shop – The Codfather. It probably dates from the 1870s.
Mission Rooms. These were built in 1882 on the corner of Station Street. In the mid 1880s they were used as a boys' school by the Northfleet Education Board. The Northfleet Silver Band practised here.
79 The Little Wonder. This pub stood at the top of Hive Lane from the 1840s until at least the Second World War. It had green tiles and was a Russell’s house called. It was called after the 1840 Derby winner.
Sturge's British School. This was built by local industrialist George Sturge in 1858, He was a Quaker who financed this Non Conformist school which was built on family property on the north side of the road slightly to the west of Hive Lane. It was a flint building with one large room, an office and a playground at the back. At the front was a drinking fountain. It had closed by the Second World War and was used as a 'British Restaurant' and from 1945 was used by the 1st Northfleet Scouts.
Court Mews. This was once the Northfleet Police Station built in 1866. The Magistrates' Court was at the rear and was opened on 1887.
Rayner's Court. These flats replaced shops which had been built in the in 1883. The name comes from a family of shop keepers.
Lodges – two octagonal lodges stood at either side of Hive Lane as the entrance drive to The Hive house.
Windmill. This is said to have stood between Hive Lane and Lawn Road before 1749

Hive Lane
Hive Lane was originally the drive to a large house and grounds called Hive House.
Hive House and Park. The name could be a corruption of ‘The Hythe’ – the area in which it stood.  The estate belonged to the Crown and was eleven and a half acres, extending from the High Street almost to the river and between College Road and Lawn Road. It was a brick three storey house with ten bedrooms, library and so on in walled gardens with carriage shed and stables, in park land and orchards. In the 18th it was a private house and the home of members of the Chiffinch family who held a series of important public appointments. In 1830, a Mr. Gibbons opened a boarding school here. The estate was auctioned in 1838 and purchased by Thomas Sturge, who in 1853 built the Knight Bevan and Sturge cement mill on the site.
The site was redeveloped for Northfleet Urban District Council in the 1960s including two terraces of shops, and a six storied building. Mostly flats and maisonettes

Huntley Avenue
Called after James Huntley Northfleet Councillor Chairman of school management and founder of Gravesend WEA

International Way
Road built across what was an area of infill and sports grounds in order to proved access to the station and a vast amount of car parking.
Ebbsfleet Station. In 1989, British Rail and Trafalgar House had devised a Channel Tunnel Rail Link (CTRL) and then submission of various plans. Eventually a route devised by The Arup & Partners was adopted but it was not until 1993 that a station here was considered. Work began in 2000 initially to dispose of flue dust from Southfleet Quarry and importing Thanet Sand to the area to stabilise the old chalk pit plus archaeology. Seven tracks would approach the site from the north, and six platform faces provided: four at ''low-level'', and a two above. Domestic services would be able to leave the CTRL at Ebbsfleet via double-track line on a 1410 yard-long viaduct. This would also accommodate a single island platform, and a direct rail connection would be made with the North Kent Line east of Northfleet station. The station’s main ‘building would be above the low level lines and be of steel, clad with 2,200 square metres of glass. Construction work was complete by 2006 and equipment recycled from Waterloo International was installed. The station opened in November 2007 and called Ebbsfleet International.
Channel Tunnel Rail Link. The first section of the CTRL opened in 2003 using the old closed branch West Street Railway. The second section leaves this at Pepper Hill and turns north-west heading for a tunnel under the Thames and passing through Ebbsfleet International railway station. However Ebbsfleet International Station has no short and convenient pedestrian connections to Northfleet.
APCM rail line going towards a tunnel under the main line. This was built in the early 1970s.

Robins Creek
Northfleet Harbour. The area now called Northfleet Harbour was formed from the inlet of the Ebbsfleet, or Fleet river into the Thames. Upstream is evidence of Roman and Saxon communities. By the 18th the Fleet was no longer navigable. It was later used for shipping Portland Cement around the world – Robins was the name of one of the early manufacturers here.
Slipway dating from pre 1800. With a dock on either side recently excavated
Watermill and weir. This was set up for flour production in the 18th in the mouth of the Fleet. It was later superseded by a watermill for cement production parts of which survive. These remains are 19th with a sluice gate, through which water still flows, with controls on the flow of water. The exit from the mill pond was designed to channel the backed up River Fleet through to the sluice.  Wyatt is said to have installed mill stones here made by Mr. Green, millwright, of the Borough and in addition, Hall of Dartford estimated for the machinery. The Tide mill was used for bruising and grinding and a windmill for grinding.
Orme House. This is said to have stood on the waterfront, to be possibly 17th and also possibly to be owned by the Crown.  It is said to have had a connection with Judge Jeffreys. In 1827 8t had stabling, coach-house, a walled kitchen garden, lawn and pleasure-grounds and a water gate. It was apparently rebuilt in 1834 and demolished in 1872 by Knight, Bevan and Surge cement company.

Robinson Way
Housing named after the original company who operate the Paper Sacks plant.

Rose Street
The Rose Pub

Station Road
Northfleet Station. Train services are operated by Southeastern. The ticket office is on the down side with a PERTIS passenger-operated ticket machine outside the station. The station is close to Ebbsfleet International station but the walking route between the two stations is 1 km and a pedestrian link has not been built because of funding issues and objections.  This station was opened by the South Eastern Railway with the North Kent Line in 1849, with two staggered platforms. It had a two-storey brick main building, on the down side - a small version of Greenwich. In 1891 this building was demolished and replaced by a wooden one on the eastern side of the subway entrance.   With the extension of third rail here the platforms were lengthened. The buildings were modernised in the mid-1960s, with the removal of the ornate canopies.  The up side shelter went in 1970 but the down side building was left although the chimney stacks being removed and windows were boarded up. Since privatisation, all windows have been boarded up
Goods. The station had single road goods shed opened with the station in 1849. These closed in 1968
A timber signal box was built in the early 1890s which controlled the goods sidings and this section of the main line. This closed in 1968
Siding in 1849 a siding ran  from west of the station to go under the London road. Tailing junctions from other chalk pits and from the new Northfleet paper mills joined it.
Sidings in 1970 a new cement sidings complex for the Portland Cement Company was installed adjacent to the up platform. The main line embankment beyond the east end of the platforms was dug out and a bridge installed allowing a second, lower track bed to be created.
Rainbow centre. Community centre
Catholic Church. The  first  catholic church  at  Northfleet  was  dedicated  to  Our  Immaculate  Mother  and  St Joseph and built in 1867. It was used as a school during the week and as a church on Sundays. It closed in 1932 and  is now the Mercy Centre for the Redeemed Christian Church of God

Stonebridge Road
Stonebridge Hill was originally called Fisherman's Hill
1 The Ebbsfleet Grill. The Ingress Tavern. This pub closed in the late 1990s. One of the rooms was at one time headquarters of National Amalgamated Stevedores, Lightermen, Watermen and Dockers union, set up in 1922
The Stone Bridge. Thus is, first mentioned in 1451, and it crossed the Ebbsfleet river and valley. A stone bridge was built in 1634, being replaced by a brick bridge around 1790. The turnpike road began here. The bridge was angled slightly to the north and not directly towards Stonebridge Hill. The reason may have been that the lower road originally went round by the Creek as the route to Gravesend. The second brick bridge was aligned to Stonebridge Hill, alongside the old bridge.
Battle of Stonebridge Hill. on 1 June 1648 this was the site of a Civil War skirmish, when a force of six hundred Royalists, under Major Childs, were defeated by four hundred Parliamentarians, mounted and foot soldiers, under Major Husband.
Black Eagle Pub. This was at the bottom of Stonebridge Hill and said to be an old manor house. Demolished in 1968
Gates to Huggens College. These are now disused.
65 Plough opened in 1715 and closed in 2010. It reopened later that year as The Cosmopolitan, closing again in 2012. It is now used as a cafe India arms
Plough Pond this was at the bottom f the hill, fed by the Ebbsfleet, and controlled by a sluice. In 1775, the Trustees of the Turnpike Road had issued instructions that a sheep wash was to be constructed in the space between the two Stone bridges. This fell into disuse in the 19th and became a pond which was filled in at the end of the 19th and the Ebbsfleet diverted under the road through a pipeline. 
Plough Marsh. This was the field on the opposite side of the road from the Football Ground was known as Plough Marsh. In the North West corner was a pond which was formed from flooded clay digging from the turn of the 18th/I9th. By 1870, it was called the 'mud hole' and there were a number of drownings. In the 1890s it was filled in by Bevan. In the Second World War a barrage balloon was sited here. It is now an industrial estate and petrol station
Ebbsfleet United Football Ground. Before the Second World War it was the home of Northfleet United founded in 1890 and playing from here in 1905. In 1946, the Gravesend and Northfleet Football Club was formed and they became Ebbsfleet United in 2007.

The Creek
The Huggens Arms. This pub opened in 1860 and closed in 1976. It had been renamed The Riverside Tavern in 1975
Wallis Park
Housing built by Noethlleet Council on Huggens College Land

Wood Street
This road ran downhill from the High Street to Station Street
Wood Street Primitive Chapel opened 1875,

Bygone Kent
Cement Kilns. Web site
Francis. The Cement Industry
Gravesend Historical Society Web site

Gravesend Historical Society. Journal
Gravesham Council. Web site
Green. Pubs of the Gravesend Area

Hoskins. History of Gravesend
Kent Rail. Web site
Lost Pubs in Northfleet. Web site
Millward and Robinson. Lower Thameside
Northfleet Harbour. Web site
Northfleet Station. Wikipedia. Web site
Robinsons of Bristol. Web site

Monday, 6 April 2015

Railway from London Bridge to Gravesend. Swanscombe

Railway from London Bridge to Gravesend.
The railway runs eastwards, veering to the south east

Post to the west Knockhall
Post to the east Northfleet

Ames Road
The road was developed by Swanscombe Urban District Council after 1926 to provide decent housing for working people. It was named after a local councillor, Walter Ames.
1 Wardona House. This is sheltered housing built on the site of the Wardona cinema. The cinema was originally the Electric set up in 1923 and run by a shopkeeper and his daughter. In 1935 it became the Jubilee and then the Tivoli.  In 1939 it was rebuilt as The Wardona and operated by Wardona Cinemas Ltd.  This was an Art Deco style building designed by Thomas Braddock, including a fin sign outside with cinema’s name in neon. It closed in 1958 and then used as a warehouse. It was later demolished.

Church Road
The road was once a footpath, running parallel to Stanhope Road and thus linking Galley Hill with Swanscombe Village. It was once known as Bird’s Row, and by 1881 Barnfield Road. It was Church Road by 1888
Swanscombe Fire Station. The fire station opened in 1908. In 1907 Swanscombe Parish Council bought land at the south end of the Primitive Methodist Chapel and in 1907 drew up plans for a new fire station. They operated this until 1941 when the National Fire Service was set up and in 1948 responsibility was devolved to Kent County Council.
Swanscombe Branch Library. This was in the upper floor of the fire station which was added in 1922 as the council chamber but unused by 1926. The library occupied the rooms from 1928 until they moved to the ground floor in 1968. Swanscombe was an early Kent County Library and this remained here until 2002
Church Road Hall. This is now a local community lettings hall. Post Second World War this was the Civil Defence Head Quarters
110 1st Galley Hill. Scout Hut
Morning Star. The pub originally operated as a small brewery and beer house. It was rebuilt about 1890 and in the 1930s tenanted by Russell's Brewery of Gravesend. It is now closed and has been converted to housing.

Craylands Lane
The Rising Sun. Pub
House – there was a 19th detached house, since demolished, which stood opposite the Rising Sun pub. It was on the site of a farm yard, with barns and an oast house in the 1860s. In the 1930s it was used by Stone Court Ballast Company.
Crown Farm. This was further down the road towards the Swanscombe Centre. A barn survived until the 21st
Pit to the east of Craylands lane. This pit lay between the London Road and the main line railway. These belonged to the J.B.White Cement Works which lay to the north of the London Road and were accessed via tunnels under the road. In time a tunnel was also dug under the railway.  There was a transshipment siding here with the South Eastern Railway. In the 1920s the light railway to the works was replaced with a standard gauge line on a steep and curving route. This line eventually led to Alkerden Lane pits.  A factory complex was also built in this pit – and later engine sheds. Edith personally remembers huge circular tanks with stirring apparatus, constantly in use here in the 1950s

Eglington Road
This was developed from 1885.

Galley Hill
Galley Hill was a separate hamlet to Swanscombe into the 1840s.
All Saints Church. It succeeded an iron church of 1882 for a parish created from St Peter & St.Paul. Built for cement maker Bazeley White by Norman Shaw in 1894. Declared redundant in 1971 it became a Roman Catholic Church. Closed again, it has since been converted to housing. On the site of Galley Hill Farm
Church Hall. This once stood to the rear of the church and was the old church hall. It was the home of slate clubs and community events.
Vicarage next to the Church
Pit to the north of Galley Hill. Appears to have exploited by the Tower Cement Co., and/or the Onward Cement Co., and/or Britannia Cement Co. Once the pits were no longer being worked they had other used. In the pit to the north of Galley Hill were a number of paper mill and related industries and that within the area of this square were the British Vegetable Parchment Mills.
British Vegetable Parchment Mills. Vegetable Parchment was used to wrap butter and similar fatty substances. The process of making vegetable parchment by immersing suitable paper in sulphuric acid was discovered by W. E. Gaine in England in 1853. Machinery, enabling its production as a continuous was developed in Bohemia. After the Great War William Harrison (chairman of the Inveresk Paper Company), established the British Vegetable Parchment Mills, at Northfleet. The Mill closed in 1971.

Gunn Road
Named for the Gunn family. Local politicians who ran Manor Farm
War Memorial. This is in the south west corner of the Recreation Ground, near to the Gunn Road gate. It is a simple, free standing memorial inscribed "To the memory of all from this district who lost their lives in the defence of freedom. Their names liveth forever more. At the going down of the sun and in the morning, we will remember them".

Harmer Road
Harmer Road School which functioned 1927-1949. In the 1960s it was Harmer Road County Primary School which closed in 1967 and then used as a youth club before demolition in November 1998.

High Street
Pits lay to the east of the High Street both north and south of the main line railway.  These seem to have been the pits operated for the Tower Cement Works on the Northfleet riverside and to have been linked to them by a light railway. A tunnel under the London Road allowed access to the southern pit.
26 The Alma.  Pub built in 1860
29-33 Post Office Site.  This was site of The Forge operated by Bundy and Williams in the 1900s.  It later became 'Old Forge Garage'. In the 1960s it was redeveloped as a post office but was in other use from the mid-1980s. A sorting office remains to the rear.
40-44 Lions Hospice shop.  This is the old Co-op shop. The parade was opened in 1913 by the Gravesend Co-Operative Society. The branch had originated here about 1889. The Cooperative movement in Gravesend closed in the 1980s, and the building has had different uses since
60 Wheatsheaf Pub
Swanscombe Station. This was a wooden platformed halt opened by the South Eastern and Chatham Railway as Swanscombe Halt’ in 1908. Existing services did not stop here and a rail motor service was provided in competition with the tram networks.  In 1930 the Southern Railway built a new station from prefabricated concrete to the east of the original.  The road bridge was used to link the two platforms and flights of steps were built carved into the hillsides. Waiting accommodation here was a timber shelter on each platform, complete with canopy. It was called just 'Swanscombe' from 1969 and was served only by stopping trains.  The wooden shelters remained and were replaced in 1995 by quasi bus shelters.

London Road
Dartford/Strood road through Gravesend built by Kent County Council in 1922. It had been turnpiked in 1738
1 George & Dragon pub. This provided accommodation and stabling and stood on the main Strood to Dartford road. The building dates from the 1840s replacing an earlier house.
Sites of houses which stood next to the pub were developed in the late 1970s into industrial units.
All Saints Room. This building, also described as a club stood opposite the George and the Dragon on the corner of London Road. A mechanics institute associated with Galley Hill School was supported Bazeley White at whose factory many of its members worked. In 1847 the works had supported a Literary Institute which met at All Saints Room.
Galley Hill School. This was founded by cement maker Bazeley White in 1858, and was associated with a mechanics' institute. The school stood in London Road opposite the George and Dragon.
Council Offices. At the entrance to White’s Cement Works, on the corner of Manor Road, White built a house like an Elizabethan mansion in concrete in the 1840s.  This was the first concrete house. It was associated with a school and a teacher’s house. From 1926 to 1964 it was used as the offices of Swanscombe Urban District Council. It was demolished when the council moved out.

Milton Road
Primitive Methodist chapel. Built in 1888 and where the congregation is still active.
59 Moore Brothers Mineral Water Company. This opened in 1879 and closed in 1963. This was classed as a brewery which produced mainly ginger beer and mineral water. Moore Brothers were active in local politics
A Strict Baptist chapel was opened in 1901 and closed in 1932

Milton Street
Swanscombe Consolidated Almshouse Charity which is made up of a number of 16th to 19th bequests for the poor which were put together to make up a house for four people. This dates from 1911.
The Woodman Pub. Closed 1913.

Park Road
Swanscombe Recreation Ground. This opened in 1932 having been built by local unemployed labour. It ground was opened by Councillor Alexander Entwhistle, chairman of the council 1930-1931, There was a bandstand and a Memorial Fountain, dedicated to the memory of Councillor Edward Moore, who died in 1932. A boating pond, was used by model boat enthusiasts During the Second World War this facility was used for roller-skating and cycles

The Channel Tunnel Rail Link passes under Galley Hill road through what are described as ‘two chalk spines’ and passes through the area once covered with paper mills in an old chalk pit.
Industrial rail and tram lines. In 1825 James Frost opened the country's first cement manufacturing plant in Swanscombe, to make ''British Cement'' and a narrow gauge rail system linked the works with the quarries. Initially horses hauled the wagons.  In 1837 under John Bazeley White & Sons steam locomotives were introduced and by 1900 this network was the most extensive in North Kent. It was later converted from narrow to Standard Gauge along with a single line connection to the North Kent Line.  The system closed in the early 1980s.

Stanhope Road
Salvation Army Barracks. This stood on the east side near the junction with Swanscombe Street.
Swanscombe Lodge. This farm dated from the 18th and owned much of the land between Stanhope Road and the Northfleet border.  It was sited at the northern end of Stanhope road and was demolished in 1984.

The name is said to mean the pasture of the swan or swineherd. 

Swanscombe Street
Swanscombe Street was the original village of Swanscombe before industry brought an increased population. It has had several names. In 1881 it was Church Road and in 1909 it was High Street.
The Mansion House was on the south side of the street east of the church. It was thought to be 16th In the 19th on occupant was John Russell the Gravesend brewer and later it was home to Henry Stopes and his daughter, birth control pioneer. The estate was sold in 1890 and the house demolished in the 1920s.
16 Sun Inn
St Peter and St Paul’s Church. There has been a church on the site since Saxon times, one building having been burnt down by Sweyne the Viking. The altar includes remnants with consecration marks of Saxon Bishops. The first stones of the current building were laid in 1050 but the south wall of the tower is all that remains of that building. The surrounding wall is built of Roman tiles.  In the 6th the Lady Chapel, was the shrine of St Hildefirth whose relic, a finger bone, was brought to Swanscombe by Bishop Odo.  It was a stop off point for Canterbury pilgrims but was destroyed during the Reformation.  There are many tombs in the church – one to Elizabethan courtier Ralph Weldon now has a replica sword and helmet over his tomb. There is also a monument to the 19th dermatologist, Sir Erasmus Wilson. Until the 19th women who died as virgins had garlands of flowers placed on their coffins.  The church was ‘restored in 1870s with money from Erasmus Wilson and the White Brothers. The tower clock and box pews were removed and the gallery and porch were rebuilt. The church was damaged by a lightning strike in 1902. This destroyed the tower and melted the bells. The church was restored within a year and the bells replaced with a peal of eight new bells replacing the six dating from 1751. They were restored again in 1995. The organ was built by Henry Fineham but has been replaced with an electronic one.
Churchyard. In 1995 the Invic6ta monument was moved here. This records the story that William the Conqueror was being forced by a Kentish army at Swanscombe to retain Kent's ancient rights in 1066. The monument originated in 1958 on the A2 and in 1965 was moved to Swanscombe Urban District Council's offices in 1965 and then into a council store.
Cemetery. The Swanscombe Burial Ground was opened in 1885. There is a small chapel built in 1905. The 4.5 acre site has an avenue of mature trees, shrubs and rose bed. Entrance at the Swanscombe Street end is via a traditional lychgate opposite the church. Swanscombe Urban District Council were responsible for this Cemetery until the 1970s when it was then taken over by Dartford Council.
Houses on the site of the Blue Anchor Pub. This was a Style & Winch house, taken over by Courage in 1958. It was built in 1735 with big garden with a stable and a skittle alley.  The name is supposed to come from storey of a chain with an anchor coming from the sky one Sunday morning to the churchyard. A sailor climbed down the chain and tried to free the anchor and apparently drowned. The metal of the anchor became the hinges of the north door of the church. The old pub was demolished and in 1965 replaced with a new pub set back from the road. This has also now been demolished

The Grove
Broomfield Park. This sports ground is managed by Fields in Trust.
Swanscombe and Greenhithe Council Offices and Community Hall.
The Grove Hall. Used by playgroups, etc.
Fire station was opened here in 1966
Squash Courts. Opened in 1975
The Pavilion Athletic Sports and Social Club

Bull. Concise History of Swanscombe
Bull. Swanscombe in Old Picture Postcards
Cinema Treasures. Web site
CTRL. Web site
Dartford Council. Web site
George and the Dragon. Web site
Kent Rail. Web site.
Stoyel and Kidner. The Cement Railways of Kent
St.Peter and St.Paul. Web site