Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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Thames Iron Works, Shipbuilding and Engineering Co

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January 1902. Thames Electrical Engineering Works.
1906. Engines - Armoured Cruiser Black Prince.
1907. Thames car. 10-12 h.p. 10-15 cwt. converted.
April 1908. 14 h.p. cab.
November 1909.
July 1910.
1910. Aeroplane engine.

of Victoria Dock Road, Canning Town, London

1899 The company was registered on 15 July, to take over the business of the Thames Iron Works and Ship Building Co, with which was amalgamated the undertaking of John Penn and Sons. [1]

Thames Ironworks became increasingly diversified, with 6 distinct departments:

By 1900 the Electrical Engineering Department had a diverse range of contracts for its work.

1898-1901: 4 first-class battleships were being built at the same time - the HMS Albion, HMS Cornwallis, and HMS Duncan for the Royal Navy and the Japanese battleship Shikishima were launched between 1898 and 1901. But the yard was increasingly uncompetitive with competitors in the North East and Scotland, and the cramped nature of the location presented problems for launching and fitting-out.

After 1901 the yard only received 3 Admiralty contracts

1904 The cruiser HMS Black Prince was launched.

1905 Thames Engineering Works, of Greenwich, makers of steam wagons, were the motor department of the company.

1910 Exhibited at the 1910 Japan-British exhibition; products included warships, engines, bridges and structural iron work, Thames motor vehicles, Normandy distilling apparatus, electrical installations, Hone's grabs and excavators[2]

1910 Advert for motorcars: full details of all models available from Thames Engineering Works Motor Dept, Greenwich. Made under the trade name Thames at the Blackheath engine works.

1911 New works at Dagenham opened[3]

1911 Launched the Dreadnought battleship HMS Thunderer, the last and largest ship constructed by the firm. The ship was produced efficiently and on time but a special wharf had to be hired at Dagenham to fit her out as there was no room in the shipyard.

No further orders were forthcoming for the yard,

1911 The motor department established Motor Coaches Ltd at the Piccadilly Hotel in London. The department had a year's work in hand and was waiting finance to expand. The civil engineering department was fairly busy. The marine engineering department was very busy with machinery for the Thunderer and HMS Chatham as well as the motor work[4]

By the end of the year, receivers had been appointed to the company.[5]

1912 the shipyard closed.

1913 The property was auctioned[6]

See also -

See Also


Sources of Information

  1. The Stock Exchange Year Book 1908
  2. The Times, Aug 03, 1910
  3. The Times, Mar 22, 1911
  4. The Times, Jun 17, 1911
  5. The Times, Jan 02, 1912
  6. The Times, May 07, 1913
  • Biography of Alfred Frank Hills, ODNB