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The current Greater London Industrial Archaeology Society's Newsletter has a couple of items about Greenwich.
One is about the closure of Firepower - "The Royal Artillery Experience' at Woolwich Royal Arsenal closed in July 2016 after struggling for years to meet its target of 200,000 visitors per years". They explain that the collection will go to the Science Museum Store in Wiltshire and not be available to the public.
- a personal comment is that we ought to find out what has happened to their valuable archive which for many years was open(ish) to the public at the RMA building in Academy Road. And (even more personal) to hope that this exhibition about shooting people is replaced by something that reflects the academic, research and manufacturing base in the Arsenal - we have here somewhere which was a world centre of excellence for technological development - and are we putting it on display?? Apparently not! Mary (sorry about that)
The GLIAS Newsletter also reports on a planning application from Crossness Engines for a narrow gauge railway and modification to an existing building as a depot. This will be a single 18" gauge track with passing loops and a station at each end. This will take people from the car park to the pumping station. They hope to use the locomotives under restoration on this.
Perhaps someone from Crossness could tell us more about the progress of this - presumably the planning application was to Bexley Council. Can we know more??
GLIAS also lists the following Greenwich sites as being featured in the London Archaeologists Fieldwork Roundup for 2015
(these are sites professional archaeologists have worked on - and PLEASE professional archaeologists - if you ever read this - this blog is always happy to put a note about your work, or whatever you want - but you need to tell us. It would be nice if you did)
Enderby Wharf - location of gunpowder works and other features
Eltham Church of England Primary School - where they recorded a Second World War air raid shelter
Greenwich Market - where they found the remains of brick walls which may have been part of Joseph Kaye's work of 1830
Royal Arsenal Riverside - found to clay pipe kilns and a bread oven
GLIAS future events include
18th January - Conkers, Cordite & the Birth of Modern Biotechnology. Prof. Martin Adams
15th February - The Spitalfields Silk Industry. Sue Jackson
15th March - Crossrail Archaeological Roundup. Jay Carver and Andy Shelley
19th April - The Royal Arsenal, Then and now. Ian Bull
17th May - AGM - The New River. Andrew Smith
all at 6.30 in The Gallery, 75 Cowcross Street, EC1M 6EL
We have been sent some material from www.heritagecounts.org.uk
This includes something about 'Placemaking and Heritage Research' which says "This year, research for Heritage Counts focused on placemaking and heritage. To investigate this topic, research was conducted into the use of heritage in place branding by Business Improvement Districts. The findings of this project will appeal to all organisations involved with place branding and with an interest in how heritage could be incorporated to enhance places".
The posting includes a link to a workbook giving the heritage profile of every local authority - (sorry - tried to get through to the Greenwich section but it complained about the version of Excel and refused to download - better luck if someone else can do it!)
There is also a link to a lot of research on the economic advantages of heritage sites - again please download and let us know what you think.
Another old pub about to go
We have had an email about the imminent demise of "the wonderful Victorian PH, "The Thames"." This is the Rose and Crown Pub on the corner of Thames Street and Norway Street. This is a proposal from a developer despite, we are informed that "It is the last remaining Victoria building in that part of Greenwich, and is actually in good condition, has been lived in recently.. and ... has existing permission to be converted into a gastropub and flats". The email also says "it's about time we started to hold on to our heritage".
Happy to pass any info on
We have a long email from the East London Waterways Group - and its a pity they don't have a web site we could refer you to because much of what they send it very interesting.
They headline this as 'Help Stop Fake Heritage at the former London Chest Hospital'. This again is how developers of this important site want to turn some perfectly decent, and listed, buildings into looking like something they never were to start with. The email also contains information about some of the industrial buildings at Hackney Wick, which are now being eyed up by developers. Most of these were in perfectly sustainable office, industrial and studio use until the Olympics came along next door. Many of the ones now being got at were part of the Dalton peanut factory.
Happy to forward their email - but - even better - get on their mailing list
and another old pub on the way out
This is the pub which has over recent years been 'The Book Place' and was held up by scaffolding for a very long time. This was The Beehive and is another 19th building rapidly being surrounded by new builds. Do we really think tourists are going to come to Greenwich to see lots of new ten storey blocks of flats??
Happy to pass on contacts if people email
We currently have a lot of stuff to go on this blog - and there is now a queue (but don't let that stop you sending more)
We hope in the next few days to cover
Our Lady of Grace Presbytery and engineer Peter Barlow (see the blue plaque)
Greenwich Power Station - and plans for its extension
Woolwich Labour Party's first offices - the first and original Labour Party ever