Monday 9 November 2020


           United Friends, 25 Wellington Street, Deptford - Licensee T C Entecott

The address is listed as 25 Wellington Street in 1882 and earlier, prior to street renumbering, and as Flagon Row in 1847. The address is at 74 McMillan Street by 1944, again due to street renaming. A listing of London historical public houses, Taverns, Inns, Beer Houses and Hotels in Deptford, Kent in the parishes of St Pauls or St Nicholas - now partially in London. 

A Post Card from Eileen

 Hello everyone 

 I though you might be interested in this old postcard as it mentions Southwark Manufacturing at 16 Evelyn Street, Deptford which I believe was gone from there by 1940.

 It also mentions some names: Joan who lived somewhere past Heybridge Avenue – the sender, nothing known of her; Miss Cottrell – nothing known of her.  It is addressed to Betty who I believe is my husband’s paternal grandmother.  She was Elizabeth Redding, born 1888, and I believe at the time she would have been living in New Cross/Newington but I’m not sure.  It must have been sent before December 1914 as that is when her father died.   I find it unusual that this Joan sent the postcard to what appears to have been Betty’s workplace rather than to her home.

Betty’s father was John Matthew Redding born c.1836 who was on Deptford Council from 1900-1905.


Eileen O'Leary

Sydney, Australia

Wednesday 26 August 2020



This is a photo of my maternal grandfather, Douglas Jack Green, taking part in a parade somewhere in Deptford! My grandparents lived in Evelyn Street until about 1933, when they moved to Sidcup.

My grandfather is the scout on the far left of the front row playing - we think - an euphonium. I know he was very involved with the scout movement.

My grandmother’s full name was Ivy Gladys May Green, nee Kingston. I think she worked at the Fry’s Chocolate factory nearby.

Andrew Stephen

Monday 13 July 2020

Help for Kellie

Hi there,

Im not sure if anyone will be able to help me but I stumbled on this blog about the history of Deptford.  My grandmother was born in 1908 and her family came from Deptford. She was born there and at some point came to Australia with her father and the woman she believed was her mother.  Unbeknownst to her her real mother was back in Deptford with her brother and went on to have a family with a new husband later on.  Its a long twisted tale Im not sure how it all went down, but would love to know if you have any information on any McAlister/Turner or Lee family from the Deptford area.  I am in Australia and dont know much about Deptford itself.

Many thanks


Letter from John C. Buckley, 57 Florence Road, New Cross, Deptford, [England], to William Lloyd Garrison, July 3, [18]67


I live on Florence Road (historically in Deptford New Town) and have been trying to find out about the history of our short street and am waiting to hear back from the council's local studies team. 

You may already have this, but I did find a letter which was written in 57 Florence Road in 1867 by an American soldier called John C. Buckley to abolitionist William Lloyd Garrison who was coming to England which I've attached here. 

I wanted to get in touch to check if any readers know anything about Florence Road and its history at all? A quick search returned no results but I thought I'd try my luck and contact you as well!
Thank you so much, Liz

Wednesday 1 July 2020


GEORGE LEADBEATER (38) , Feloniously wounding Emily Lewis with intent to murder her. Second Count, with intent to do her grievous bodily harm.

EMILY LEWIS . I live at 17, Watergate St, Deptford—I am single and a laundress—I have known the prisoner between four and five years by living with him as his wife—I ceased to live with him the week before Whitsun on account of his brutality to me he turned me out—I went to live at Mrs. Cromartie's, No. 2, Riley Street and from there to 17, Water-gate Street—I saw the prisoner on October 18th at about a quarter to six; he asked me if I should like to go to a play—we went to the Star Music Hall,

The Star Music Hall, Bermondsey.
and from there to Peckham; we went to a public house and had two glasses of ale; he threw one over me, and I walked out and took the tram to Deptford—I went home and came out again—I met the prisoner in Watergate Street—he drew out an open knife and said, "You and me for it before twelve o'clock to-night"—that is the knife (Produced)—I said, "Before you do that think of your boys down home; never mind me, go and see to them"—he quietened down, and I asked him for a halfpenny, which he gave me—I went to the Harp of Erin 

Harp of Erin
and got a glass of ale—he came in and landed me a blow on the face—he accused me of being with Mr. Cromartie—we were turned out of the public house—it was 11.30—Mr. Cromartie saw me home—I shut myself in the back room—three minutes later the prisoner came in; he had no boots on and a lightedmatch in one hand and the open knife in the other—he said he meant doing for me and stabbed me on my forehead three times—I tried to protect myself and got a stab in my neck and the back of my ear—I fell down on my left side—I said, "Oh, George, you have killed me, get me a drop of brandy;" he said, "My girl, I will," and jumped out at the window for it—I crawled upstairs to Mrs. Iiford's room—when he brought the brandy he had a cut on his hand—I was taken to Princes Street Police Station

Prince St Police Station
and from there to the infirmary—I remained there till last Tuesday.
The Prisoner. I had been out drinking with my brother-in-law; I was drunk; all I know is we went out for a walk; I do not know anything about beer being thrown over her; after we went to Peckham I do not know what happened; I did not recollect anything till Sunday morning.
By the COURT. The prisoner unloads bricks from barges—there is not a quieter man when he is sober.
JOHN THOMAS KIDDES . I am landlord of the Harp of Erin, King Street , Deptford—Emily Lewis was in my house on Saturday, October 18th about 11 p.m.—she had a glass of ale—the prisoner rushed into the bar and started using bad language, so I had him put out—he was perfectly sober—he called her filthy names and said she had been deceiving him.
The Prisoner. If he says I was sober he is telling a falsehood; I do not even recollect seeing him.
JOHN WILLIAM AMOS . I am a labourer of 17, Watergate Street Deptford—at 11.20 on October 18th I saw the prisoner in my back room—I asked him what business he had there; he said, "All right, Jack"—he came out at the door with a lighted match—he had a knife in his hand or a dagger—he shut it up and put it in his pocket—he rushed out of the passage—that made me suspicious, and I burst open the door of the back room—I saw Emily Lewis, who was a stranger to me, lying face downwards in a pool of blood—I went for help, and when I came back she had crawled upstairs under my adopted son's bed—Mrs. Cromartie and myself found her there, and put her on the door-step till the constable took her.
By the COURT. I know the prisoner by sight—I have seen him in the place three or four times—I believe he is some relation of Mr. Cromartie, but what I cannot say—I believe he was the worse for liquor, but I cannot say he was drunk.
EMMA CROMARTIE . I am the wife of George Cromartie, of 17, Watergate  Street, Deptford—at the end of August, Emily Lewis came to live at my house—on October 18th, at about 11.45, I found her in the back room and brought her down into my room—I saw the prisoner there; he brought a cup with some brandy or whisky in it—I took it out of his hand and said, "Leave my room, you brute"—he went away, and I did not see him any more until he was at Princess Street Station—I helped the constable lead Emily Lewis to the station, where her wounds were stitched up.
WILLIAM WIGGINS . I am assistant medical superintendent of Greenwich Infirmary

GREENWICH Infirmary 
Emily Lewis was brought to me on October 19th, at 2.30 a.m.; she was very faint from loss of blood—I found a wound 2 1/2 inches long over her right eye, and eight punctured wounds in her neck, chiefly in the back—they varied in depth from 1 inch to 2 1/2 inches; one of them reachedas far as the spinal column; the wound over her eye reached down to the scalp—there was a cut on her left arm and left hand, a contusion over her left eye and a cut on her lip—the wounds were such as might be caused by the knife produced—she remained at the infirmary till November 4th—dodo of the wounds of themselves would be fatal, but they were dangerous if either of the wounds in the neck had severed the jugular vein or one of the main arteries she would have lived but a few minutes—the position of the wounds was dangerous.
FRANK BEVIS (Police Sergeant R.) On October 19th, at 1 a.m., I saw the prisoner at 29, Charles Street (now Comet PlaceI said, "I am a police sergeant and shall arrest you for attempting to murder by stabbing Emily Lewis on head, neck, and arms at 17, Watergate Street at ten o'clock to-night"—he said, "I caught her with George Cromartie; I meant her murder; I wish the knife was longer so that it would have put her out; I wish I had the chance to do it now"—I produced the knife, and he said, "That is the knife I did it with"—I took him to the station—he was afterwards charged, when he said, "Very good, this is what a man will do when he is mad wild"—on being taken from the dock he said, "I meant to kill Cromartie as well"—when I arrested him he appeared to be perfectly sober.
Prisoner's defence. "I did not understand the charge when it was read over to me. I did not recollect anything that night. I plead for mercy. I do not know what I did it for. I had no cause for it.
GUILTY on the Second Count only. Three years' penal servitude.

Report from the Old Bailey Records

Saturday 27 June 2020

St Nicholas Church Deptford 1966.

Original new photograph sent to me by an interested subscriber.

Deptford Water Works Chimney Demolition 1966

I was sent this old photo showing Deptford Waterworks chimney demolition. Can anyone tell me what location the photo was taken from. Thanks.

Rank Flower Mill 1966.

Mumford’s Flour Mills were founded in 1790, built beside Deptford Creek. The mills were supplied by small craft entering the Creek from the Thames. Mumford’s Mills flourished throughout the 19th century. It should be noted that 11 Mills were recorded in the Domesday Book (1086), all standing on the River Ravensbourne. Because Mumford’s Mill was not erected until 1790, it is not one of those 11 ancient mills. A new large mill was erected 1897, designed by Sir Aston Webb and Ingress Bell. There are large inscriptions at the top of the building showing ‘1790, 1897, Mumford’s Greenwich Flour Mills’ and ’S P Mumford & Co’. In the 1930s the building was acquired by the Rank Group. Since then the building has stood empty for several decades. The Rank Group was founded by Joseph Rank in 1875 as a flour milling business and is still in existence today, now known as Rank Hovis McDougal (RHM). Incidentally, the equally famous J Arthur Rank film business was also started by a member of the same family.

My thanks to "Know Your London"for historic information

Help for Louise

Hi guys it’s a long shot but I’m looking for my grandad I have a very limited amount I know about him. His name is Sidney William Nicholls he lived at 23 Hyde street deptford in 1963&64 he lived with his dad who I believe is Sidney Nicholls (He was a lorry driver) & younger brother. I believe he would now be around 80 He was in to motorbikes and tattoos other than that I don’t know much 🙁

Saturday 4 April 2020

Deptford Babies Hospital. Different view looking West towards the High St.

Leighs Story


I was born in Deptford in 1957. Number 9 (I think) Walnut House, Edward Street. I have very vague memories of going to Edward St nursery school.
This next photo was taken by my brother, I have vivid memories of looking at him with his box brownie camera and Walnut house behind him. From this view, obviously taken on my birthday you can see they playground in front of Walnut house.
My family name was Morris, my first name was pretty unusual at the time, being Leigh. Perhaps someone remembers my family. My dad Joe was one of identical twins married to my mum, Joy.  I had an older brother Steve. I remember we used to go to the local baths (not swimming) but for taking a bath and doing your weekly wash, we obviously didn’t have a bathroom in our flat. It may have been in Evelyn Street. I remember a sweet shop just under some railway arches? and in another street nearby either a pet shop or a shop that had a minah bird in a cage outside that would talk to passers by. In those days your local doctor was a family one and would come and pay home visits. Ours was a Dr Conway, does anyone remember him ? On one occasion he was visiting to see my father (who was a steel-erector and had fallen through a roof damaging his back) when he saw that I was having a severe asthma attack. We had no home telephones in those days, so he had to run to the local call box to dial for an ambulance. One of many I’m afraid. I spent more time in Lewisham hospital than in school! The air pollution was pretty bad in those days often with thick “pea souper” smog. I do remember we also had a smallpox outbreak in London and everyone had to be vaccinated. I attach a copy of a photo of myself (aged around) 3Yrs I guess immediately taken after that. I am the first one. We don’t look too impressed do we ?

Wednesday 4 March 2020

The Fountain, 36 Deptford Broadway, Deptford SE8

Thomas Randall and Sons in the back yard of the Old Fountain

How things change 

Deptford Green

The Peppercorn Brothers Deptford Broadway

Not quite sure where on the Broadway they were. Can anyone help with identifying 
their location Please. 

 This Pewter teapot was sold by them

Tuesday 3 March 2020

Trying to find out about the Mantles & Gitshams from Mill Street

Dear Andy,

I have put a post up on the Carrington post, but didn't get any replies so hoping you could put a separate post for me to assist with my search for info. I have written the following that you could cut and paste into the post if that makes things easier'

I am a great granddaughter of Maria Mantle, whose parents Uriah and Sarah Gitsham, ran the Freemason's Arms, a pretty down and out alehouse in Mill St. The alehouse was eventually closed and buildings demolished and replaced by Carrington House.

In trying to trace the movements of the family after leaving the Mill St address, I haven't been able to find information. Maria eventually emigrated to Melbourne Australia but shipping records not clear in determining her arrival date. She gave birth to my grandfather in December 1899 out of wedlock. His birth certificate does not record a father's name. 

Maria's mother, Sarah Gitsham seems to have been a bit of a tough old chook, remarrying a Daniel Hone and having more children post Uriah. She also seems to have visited Melbourne at least once.

If anyone can help me out on my quest to learn more about the Gitshams and Mantles of the former Mill St I would greatly appreciate any information that you can provide.  

Thanks for putting this up on your website.
Kind regards

Friday 21 February 2020

Photo on the Deptford Fund Hospital for Sick Babies

Babies Hospital located at 36, 38 Albury Street. Also could have been at number 34 as well.

Jeff Memories of Carrington House

HI Andy?,
 I was born in the old St. Alfages hospital in Greenwich in 1950.Apparently I was not thriving as I should as my Mum was terrified of the ward sister which caused problems with feeding me. My Dad decided to kidnap us both and we came home to the family residence at 39 St. Donatts Road, New Cross. I went to school at St. James's in the road of the same name, New Cross and later went to Addey and Stanhope grammar school (known by us as Study and No Hope) In New Cross Road Deptford. I well remember Carrington House and the forboding presence it cast over Brookmill Road and the surrounding area. When I was 15, I had a girlfriend who had a horse. She was so devoted to it that she turned up on it one day ....for a date at the pictures at the local fleapit (Deptfor Odeon). I told her that the place was pretty bad but didn't think they would let her and her horse in. As I recall a few of the local girls kept horses in the stables in Mechanics Passage where the totters kept theirs.
   In the 1070s, I started a long career driving buses and often drove the 47 past Carrington House and in the mid 1980s the 53 past the end of Brookmill Road. Looking back we seemed to enjoy our simple lifestyle and seemed a lot healthier for it.
  Thank you for all the lovely memories contained in your blog.

Thursday 21 November 2019


Hello All

I wonder if you are able to help me.

I recently purchased a cast iron name plate. On the back is written…

Manufactured by
The Excell Foundry Co
489a New Cross Road
London SE 14

I have been unable to find any information on this foundry. Does anyone have any information on it?


Steve Frampton
Trading in Number Plates since 1975

Friday 6 September 2019

Deptford Ragged School Archive Heritage Open Day

Hi All

My name is Katharine and I am currently running (on a part-time, voluntary basis) the Deptford Ragged School Archive which is based in The Bear Church/Shaftesbury Christian Centre, Frankham St, Deptford. 

Since Jan 2019 I and a group of volunteers have been meeting once a month to catalogue and document the archive, making it publicly available, recording the collection on our Deptford Ragged School Archive page of eHive.  One day we hope to list everything we’ve got on there.
We’re finding out some great stories about the history of the Deptford Ragged School dating back to 1844, the year it was started.

I’m actually getting in touch to invite you all to the Deptford Ragged School Open Day on  Saturday 21st Sept, 13:30-17:00 Shaftesbury Christian Centre, Frankham St, Deptford

Look forward to seeing you all


Thursday 25 July 2019

Help for Ralph Deptford Football Club Bronze Athletic

Hi there, 

I am trying to gather more information on the former Deptford Football Club Bronze Athletic who played there home games on the ground at the end of Yeoman Street off of Plough Road, Deptford. They seem to have become defunct about the  time of the First World War. 
The reason for all this is the action photo I have included. When I tried to get more information on Twitter three separate people suggested the photo could be of Bronze Athletic and one suggested the chimneys in the photo could be the old Deptford Power Station. If it is the DPS the photo could have been taken close by to Bronze Street which may be how the club got their name. I’ll include an accompanying team photo just in case. 
Any help would be so gratefully received. 

Kind regards. 

Ralph Sheridan. 

Monday 11 March 2019

Help for Glyn

My wife's family came from Deptford.  Their family name is POOLE.

We know they lived in 5 Evelyn Place, Deptford  in 1881 (from the census) and later had a butcher's shop at 168 Grove Street.

The son (my wife's grandfather) lived at 162 Grove Street and later at 125 Grove Street.

Her  great grandmother had a sweet shop at 1 Tanner's Hill. See photo. This was taken in 1919. But we know nothing about it. If you know anything we would be interested to hear.

Kind regards

Glyn Wise

Thursday 27 December 2018

My name is Marian Jessie Bravery (nee Lewington) and I was born in Deptford in November 1936. My parents were Minnie Louisa Lewington (nee Barker) and Leonard John Lewington from Rotherhithe. My mum and Dad lived, with me, at 71 Windmill Lane until we were bombed out near the beginning of the Second World War. Although I was just a toddler at that time I do have some memories of the house. I remember crying when my mum told me that my teddy bear had been looted after the bombing because I used to cuddle him at the foot of the stairs.He was almost the same size as I was, so he was a large teddy! I also remember my mum took me to a grocer shop on a corner off Windmill Lane owned by a nice man called Harry Bloor who used to give me offcuts of breakfast sausage. And my mum used to push me, in my pushchair when going for walks, over the Surrey Canal.
I later discovered that my mum's sister, Ada lived next door, with her husband Leslie. Leslie was later called up and got captured in Singapore immediately they arrived, poor man, and suffered ill health even though he did survive. My aunt Ada spent the whole of the war years not knowing whether he was alive or dead but he turned up at my Granny Barker's flat in Renforth Street, Rotherhithe in 1946!
Our large family took care of me and mum after 71 Windmill Lane was destroyed so we were never without a bed. There is so much more to say (like when I got strafed while walking in Deptford High Street with my mum when I was six and living in Edward Street with my Aunt Flo, Uncle Frank Bennett and cousin Frankie ~ but I don't want to go on too long until I know that I might get a reply to this email. Although I now live in New Zealand, I still love, deep in my heart, Deptford, Rotherhithe and Surrey Docks area.

Saturday 7 July 2018

Help for Pat

Does anyone remember my Grandad from Edward Street, Deptford?
I have the original newspaper this was from.
I lived in Clyde Street, Deptford. My name was Pat Hill, and I had a brother Bob, and my parents names were Charles and Vi Hill.
Any replies would be interesting.
Pat Robertson

Tuesday 22 May 2018

Help for Ron

I wonder if I'm the only one old enough to remember Windmill Lane, and in particular the building shown in my attachment.  I recently purchased a photograph taken shortly after a 
bomb destroyed the Chichester pub which was on the corner of Windmill Lane and Evelyn St. 1943. It revived the curiosity I always felt when I passed this building 80 years ago.

It looks similar to the houses next door, but had an industrial gate on the ground floor, and no windows.....just an open space above the door. 
The house next door is I believe No. 2, and I know who occupied it between 1930 and 1940. An old map from c.1900 suggests that there may have been a way to access the school from W.L. at this point. I have looked in several Directories going back to 1880 but can find no reference to a business at this location. My only guess is that it could have been a house, later converted to a loading bay for horse-drawn carts. Anybody know?

Ron King 

Thursday 29 March 2018

Bronze Street Deptford

Most family's kept chickens in Deptford hence "OVUM" CHICKEN feed being sold at the corner shop, well I think so?

The Albury Street Masquerade: The Ripper's Story

London 1890, The murder of Alice Mckenzie, not attributed to Jack the Ripper.

A genetic research scientist, whose aim is to discover if a ‘Killer gene’ exists if so can it be removed? His research becomes an obsession when he learns from his ghostly great-great-grandmother, that his origins begin with her and a man, William, known as Jack The Ripper. The writer gives us a new perspective on Jack, that of a loving man until his life crashes in on him with his marriage.

The scientist inherited a family home on Albury Street, Deptford, haunted by his dead relatives. Wanting to help their descendants, they demand he takes his troubles there, where they can deal with them quickly and permanently. His dead great-great-grandmother wishes to smooth his way in life because she could not help her son born in an asylum after she was committed there for the murder of William, aka Jack The Ripper, the father of the child. The researcher accepts her help, and that of the dead William, alas, their solutions are final, and murder follows his family line of which he plans to be the last one, a path fraught and dangerous and one he can never win. 
The writer uses real incidents of bodies found on the Thames embankment and around the country through the decades, all unnamed and unclaimed by society.

Wednesday 31 January 2018

Interesting facts about Deptford from the book " Curiosities of Great Briton." By Thomas Dugdale, William Burnett

DEPTFORD was anciently denominated West Greenwich. From a small fishing village, it has risen to a large, flourishing, and populous town. The situation of this place, on the banks of the Ravensbourne, gave rise to its present name, originally spelr Depeford, from the deep ford, which has been superseded by a bridge over that river. It was also named Deptford Strond; an appellation afterwards solely appropriated to what is now called the lower town, included in the parish of Deptford St. Nicholas: the upper town is in that of Deptford St. Paul, which was constituted a distinct parish in 1730. A royal dock was established here, by Henry VIII., in the beginning of his reign. Since that period, the town has progressively increased; its population having augmented in the proportion of twenty to one, though it experienced a considerable check in 1665 and 1666, when nearly 900 persons died here of the plague. The manor was given by the Conqueror to Gilbert de Magnimot, who made it the head of his barony, and erected a castle here, every part of which has been long since buried in its own ruins. After passing through the hands of numerous possessors, the manor was resumed by the crown at the restoration. The manor-house, with its surrounding estate, which had obtained the name of Sayes Court, from its having been long held by the Says, became, in 1651, the residence of John Evelyn, Esq., the celebrated author of the Sylva; and to him, in 1663, Charles II. granted a new lease, at a reserved annual rent of 22s. 6d. This gentleman passed much of his time in retirement, " at this his favourite spot." His gardens are said to have been the wonder and admiration of the greatest men of his time: in the life of Lord Keeper Guidford, they are described as "most boscaresque; being, as it were, an examplar of his book of forest trees." The severe frost of the winter of the year 1682, did considerable damage here; but a more complete destruction was made by Peter the Great, to whom Mr. Evelyn lent bis house and grounds, whilst he was obtaining a knowledge of the science and practice of naval architecture in the adjoining dock-yard, in 1698. Mr. Evelyn died in 1706. The house and gardens were afterwards entirely neglected; and there is not now the least trace of either: the present workhouse was built on the site of the Charitable institutions.
Deptford, so named from a deep ford.
The manor of Sir John Evelyn, the author of Sylva.

Lamentable fire in 1652,
Great im provent for maritime purposes.
Dsptford. I former, in the year 1729. The estate, however, which includes the site « the present victualling-house, and of a large dock-yard, is still vested in the Evelyns. A lamentable fire happened at Deptford, in 1652; any nineteen years afterwards the lower town was inundated by a great flooi which rose to the height of ten feet in the streets near the river, so tha: the inhabitants were obliged to retire to the upper town in boats. The adjoining marshes were also overflowed, and about 700 sheep, with a great number of oxen, cows, &c. were destroyed. Sir Thomas Wyat lay = night and a day at Deptford, with his army, in the year 1553. The Royaidock, or King's-yard, has been greatly enlarged and improved since iti original establishment. It is managed under the immediate inspection of the navy board: the resident officers are a clerk of the cheque, a storekeeper, a master shipwright, and his assistants, a clerk of the survey, a master attendant, a surgeon, and various inferior officers. The number of artificers and labourers employed here is about 1,500: even in times of peace, the general number is upwards of 1,000. The whole extent of the yard includes about thirty-one acres, which are occupied by various buildings; two wet docks, a double and a single one; three slips for men of war; a basin, two mast ponds; a model-loft; mast-houses; a large smith's shop, with about twenty forges lor anchors; sheds for timber, &c The old store-house is a quadrangular pile, and appears to have consisted originally only of the range on the north side; where, on what was formerly the front of the building, is the date 1513, together with the initials H.R. in a cypher, and the letters A.X. for Anno Christi. The buildings on the east, west, and south sides of the quadrangle, have been erected at different times; and a double front, towards the north, was added in 1721. Another store-house, parallel to the above, and of the same length, having sail and rigging lofts, was completed a few years ago: and there is also a long range of smaller store-houses, that was built under the direction of Sir Charles Middleton, afterwards Lord Barham, about the year 1780. The other buildings consist of various workshops and houses for the officers, where some of the largest ships in the navy have been built. On the north of the King's-yard stands the victualling-office, sometimes called the Red-house, from its occupying the site of a large range of store-houses, constructed with red bricks, which was burnt down in July, 1639, together with all its stores. Being rebuilt, it was included in the grant of Sayes court to Sir John Evelyn, in 1726; and was then described as 870 feet in length, 35 feet wide, and containing 100 warehouses. These premises were for some time rented by the East India company; but being re-purchased of the Evelyns by the crown, a new victualling-house was built on the spot in 1745, to replace the old victualling-office on Tower-hill. This new building was also accidentally burnt in 1749, with great quantities of stores and provisions. The immense pile which now forms the victualling office, has been erected at I different times since that period; and consists of many ranges of building, I appropriated to the various establishments necessary in the important concern of victualling the navy. In addition to the Royal-dock, here are two large private yards for ship building, belonging to Messrs. Barnards and Roberts, where men of war, of seventy-four guns, are sometimes built. Here is also a large and commodious commercial dock, which was opened on the 30th of June, 1809. Itwas intended principally for the receptionof foreign merchantmen engaged in the Baltic trade. It was formerly known by the name of the Greenland dock; in which several alterations and improvements were made, and an entirely new range of store houses was erected. The Lord Mayor's barge, handsomely decorated, was the first to enter; the whole ceremony was conducted with much pomp and splendour: and, as a close of the proceedings, a party of about 150 persons partook of an elegant dinner in one of the store-houses. 'The town of Deptford contains two churches; the oldest is dedicated to St. Nicholas, from time immemorial,
I Commercial dock.trie patron of sea-faring men; and the other to St. Paul. St. Nicholas
church consists of a nave, chancel, and aisles, with an embattled tower of

flint and stone, of a date long prior to the body of the fabric, which was
rebuilt in 1697, on account of the great increase of inhabitants. In
the chancel, against the north wall, within the recess for the altar, is the
monument of Captain Edward Fenton, who accompanied Sir Martin
Frobisher in his second and third voyages, and had himself the command
of an expedition for the discovery of a north-west passage. Near this is
a tablet inscribed to Henry Roger Boyle, eldest son to Richard, Earl of |
Corke, who died at a school in Deptford, in 1615; and a neat mural
monument to the memory of George Shelvock, Esq., secretary of the
general post-office, and F.R.S., who, at a very early period of life, attended
his father in a voyage round the world. The tomb of Captain George
Shelvocke is near the east end of the chancel, on the outside; he was
descended of an ancient Shropshire family, and bred to the sea service under
Admiral Benbow. Against the east wall, to the north of the altar recess, is
the monument of Peter Pett, Esq., a master shipwright in the King's-yard,
whose family were long distinguished for their superior talents in ship-
I building; and who was himself the first inventor of that useful ship of war,
I a frigate: he died in 1652. On the opposite wall is a mural monument, with a
long inscription, in memory of Sir Richard Browne, Knt., of Sayes court,
who was " Governor of the United Netherlands, and was afterwards, by Queen
Elizabeth, made Clerk of the Green Cloth, in which honourable office he
continued under King James, till the time of his death, in May, 1604, aged
sixty-five years;" of Christopher Browne, Esq., his son, who died in
March, 1645, at the age of seventy; of Sir Richard Browne, knight and
baronet, only son of Christopher; and of their respective wives. Many
other monuments and inscriptions are in this church: among them a slab
in the pavement of the north aisle marks the burial-place of Mr. John
Benbow, eldest son of the gallant Admiral Benbow, who died at the age of
twenty-seven, November, 1708. The register of this parish records the
following instances of longevity: Maudlin Augur, buried in December,
1672, aged 106; Catherine Perry, buried in December, 1676, by her
own report, 110 years old; Sarah Mayo, buried in August, 1705, aged
102; and Elizabeth Wiborn, buried in December, 1714, in her 101st
year. The church of St. Paul is a handsome stone fabric, erected under
the provisions of certain acts passed in the ninth and tenth years of Queen
Anne, for the building of fifty new churches in and near London. It has
a well-proportioned spire at the west end : the roof is sustained by columns
of the Corinthian order; the pews are of Dutch oak, and the whole inte-
rior is neatly fitted up. On the north side of the altar, against the east
wall, is an elegant mural monument, by Nollekins, in memory of James
Sayer, Esq., Vice-Admiral of the White, son of John Sayer, and Catherine,
his wife, one of the daughters and co-heirs of Rear-Admiral Robert
Hughes, and Lydia, his wife, who all lie buried in the old church of this
town, with many of their issue. On the south side of the chancel is a
sumptuous monument, displaying a sarcophagus, surmounted by a large
urn of statuary marble, partly covered with a mantle, in memory of
Matthew Finch, gentleman, who died in 1745; and on the nprth side is
another splendid monument, in commemoration of Mary Finch, daughter
of the above, and wife to Richard Hanwell, of Oxford, gentleman, who
died in 1754. Among the tombs in the church-yard, is one in memory
of Margaret Hawtree, a famous midwife, who died in 1734, inscribed as

She was an indulgent mother, and the best of wives:

She brought into this world more than three thousand Uvea!
Mrs. Hawtree gave a silver basin, for christenings, to this parish, and

another to that of St. Nicholas. Mr. Isaac Blight, ship-breaker, of Green-
land-dock, who was killed by a pistol-shot, as he was sleeping in his
[ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]
chair in his back parlour, was also buried in this church-yard. A. man of

the name of Richard Patch, who had been taken into the employment of ,
the deceased, out of motives of charity, about three years before, and was
his confidential servant, was tried on suspicion of the murder, convicted
upon a chain of the most satisfactory evidence, and executed on the 8th
of April, 1806. For a long time great interest was excited by the
trial and execution of this man. The register records the burial of
Margaret Haley, who died in March, 1739-40, aged 100, and upwards.
The rectory-house is a handsome edifice. This parish contains about
1DO0 acres of lands; of which from 900 to 1100 are marsh and
pasture; about 550 arable; ani 250 occupied by market gardeners,
who are famed for the growth of asparagus and onions. Here are
several meeting-houses for Methodists, Independents, Quakers, Ana-,
baptists, and other sects. In this parish stands one of the telegraphs I
which communicate with the admiralty and Dover. The Surrey and'
Croydon canals also pass through and communicate with each other
in this parish. The corporation or society of the Trinity-house, the
meetings of which are now held in a handsome building on Tower-hill,
was originally established at Deptford, in the reign of Henry VIII., and
incorporated by the name of " The Master, Warden, and Assistants, of the
Guild or Fraternity of the most glorious and undivided Trinity, and of St.
Clement, in the parish of Deptford Strond." The ancient hall, in which
the members continued to assemble at this place, was pulled down about
the year 1787, on the erection of the Trinity-house in London; but here
are still two hospitals belonging to the corporation. The old hospital,
which adjoins to St. Nicholas church-yard, was founded in the time of
Henry VIII., and originally contained twenty-one apartments; bat on its
being pulled down and rebuilt in 1788, the number was increased to
twenty-five. That called Trinity-hospital, which stands in Church-street,
was erected towards the end of the 17th century, on a piece of ground
given for the purpose, in 1672, by Sir Richard Brown, the younger,
baronet, of Sayes court, who was an elder brother and master of the
Trinity-house. It consists of fifty-six apartments, forming a spacious
quadrangle, in the centre of which is placed a statue of Captain
Richard Maples, who, in 1680, bequeathed £1,300 towards the building.
The pensioners in both hospitals consist of decayed pilots, and masters of
ships, or their widows: the annual allowance to the widows and single
men is about £18; the married men receive about £28 yearly. Here are
numerous charitable establishments. In those founded previously to the
year 1730, both parishes have a joint interest. In Butt-lane is a charitv-
school, under the direction of twelve trustees, endowed for the education
and clothing of 100 boys and girls, who are apprenticed out. The school
house was erected about the year 1722, on a piece of ground given for the
purpose, by Mr. Robert Gransden; whose daughter, Mrs. Mary Gransden,
in 1719, bequeathed £80 towards the building; and also gave a farm in
Essex, and the ground rents of two tenements in St. Bartholomew's-lane,
London (since sold to the Directors of the Bank for £1,300), towards the
endowment of the school: the whole expense of the building amounted to
about £740. Besides the children educated in this school, between twenty
and thirty others are taught elsewhere, with the produce of different bene-
factions. A bequest of £200 was made by Mr. John Addey, a master
builder in the King's-yard, in the year 1606, for the purchase of land.
With this sum the Gravelpit-field, Deptford, was bought, the annual
rents of which now amount to more than £280. The Gun-tavern in this
town is said to have been the residence of the Earl of Nottingham, Lord
Admiral to Queen Elizabeth, whose arms, encircled by the garter, are
carved in wood over the chimney-piece of a large dining-room. Sir Thomas
Smith, who was sent ambassador to the court of Russia by James I., had
a magnificent house at Deptford, which was burnt down on the 20th of

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]
January, 1613. Cowley, the poet, was also a resident here for a considerable period. In the year 1753, an act was passed for paving and cleaning the streets, and for the better relief and employment of the poor. The bridge over the Ravensbourne, which was formerly of wood, but rebuilt of stone at the sole cost of Charles I., in 1C28, has been rendered more commodious of late years, at the expense of the parishioners. Here, previously to the battle of Blackheath, in the reign of Henry VII., was a skirmish between Lord Dawbeney's troops and "certayne archers of the rebelles; whose arrowes, as is reported, were in length a full yerde." The population of this town are chiefly employed in the dock-yards, or engaged in maritime pursuits. An extensive manufacture of earthenware, called Deptford ware, is successfully caried on here.