Thursday, 15 October 2015

Riverside south of the river and east of the Tower. Stone Marshes

Riverside south of the river and east of the Tower
Stone Marshes

Desolate area which once was home to several cement works and is now all modern office blocks plus a new port area.

Post to the east Greenhithe
Post to the north Dartford Crossing
Post to the south Stone
Post to the west Dartford Crossing and Crossways


Crossways Business Park
Reclamation of the land used by the cement works and their railways began in 1979. In 1985 roads were built to access the new ferry terminal. In 1988 Masthead, was completed and in 1988/9 the ASDA warehouse was finished. There are now five business areas :- Masthead, Newtons Court, Edisons Park, Admirals Park and Charles Park               
Galleon Boulevard
ASDA Distribution Centre.


Stone Marshes
Area of marshland which was used for a number of cement works in the late 19th and early 20th and since redeveloped as a business park and port area.
Albion Portland Cement Works. The Albion works was operational: 1879-1914, 1919-1922. It was initially owned from 1879 to 1890 by Williams Fry and Co. Ltd, then 1890-1903 Albion Portland Cement Co. Ltd, and following a mer4ge 1903-1911 it was Artillery and Albion Cement Co. Later, between 1911 and 1922, it was part of Blue Circle. The initial installation was for 6 chamber kilns, to which in 1889 a pair of Dietzsch kilns added and a further 13 chamber kilns 1902-1909. It was merged with the Artillery works in 1903. There was a standard gauge rail link which ran under the South Eastern Railway and Cotton Lane to a pit but the product was shipped from Stone Court pier. The site was entirely cleared and is now part of a container terminal
Artillery Cement Works. The Artillery Cement Works was operational 1890-1903 by Rosher & East, and then following a merger became between 1903-1911 Artillery and Albion Cement Co.  Later between 1911-1922 it was part of Blue Circle. There were 14 chamber kilns in 1897-1900 and a further 7 chamber kilns were installed around 1904. There was a standard gauge rail link which ran under the South Eastern Railway and Cotton Lane to a pit. This was extended in 1908 to an exchange siding with the South Eastern Railway main line. Cement was shipped from Stone Court pier. The area was completely cleared and Meridian House, Crossways, is on the site.
Greenhithe Portland Cement Works. The Greenhithe Company works was operational between 1889-1914 having been opened by the Gillingham Portland Cement Co. Ltd. From 1893 to 1900 it was run by  J. B. White & Brothers Ltd and then 1900-1914 it was part of Blue Circle. There were 14 chamber kilns here in 1900 and  aa further 10 chamber kilns were added 1902-1909. There was a standard gauge rail link which ran under the South Eastern Railway and Cotton Lane to a pit but the cement itself was shipped from Stone Court pier. The site was entirely cleared: and is now part of the container terminal.
Kent Cement Works This was operational 1922-1970 using a quarry at which was initially worked by the Stone Court Chalk Land and Pier Co., and subsequently acquired by APCM.  The works was set up in 1919 by the Kent Portland Cement Works which had beenwas launched to buy and install a large, modern, plant, and failed before the plant was complete, because of over-spend. APCM bought it from the liquidator. Subsequently, the FLS-designed plant became an APCM showpiece and influenced the development of subsequent Blue Circle/Vickers designs. Kilns A1 and A2 were the largest in Britain until 1926 when they were overtaken by Bevan’s A1-A3. The plant was operated by Blue Circle together with nearby Johnsons. Four rotary kilns were installed. Clay was washmilled separately and from 1938 delivered as slurry by barge from Cliffe, chalk was brought from the quarry by rail. Rail links were via an exchange siding on the South Eastern Railway main line. In 1963 the line was connected to Johnsons although there was a prexisting line between the two works along the riverbank. . The works closed in 1970 and was demolished.  A few fragments of the wharf remain but the plant site is covered by part of the Crossways industrial park.
Sewage works.Dartford Rural District Council works. Now closed
Shield Portland Cement Works. Shield works was operational from 1880 when it was set up by Wilders and Cary but from 1900 to 1914 it was part of Blue Circle. There were 7 chamber kilns here in 1900. The site was entirely cleared and is now part of the container terminal.
Stone Court Pier. This was taken over by the Stone Court Company in 1885. It was an existing pier from about 1873. Near the pier were the Albion, the Artillery, the Shield and the Greenhithe cement works. A rail line ran from here under the South Eastern Main Line to a pit south of this and Cotton Lane. When the Kent Works was built a connection was made to the Stone Court Line via a cutting alongside the main line just north of the Cottons Lane Tunnel. Another cutting south of the line allowed Stone Court trains to access pits to the west. From, 1935 the Stone Court Company worked gravel pits near the river. The works was abandoned in 1949 and eventually became part of APCM.  All four of the Stone Court Cement Works closed in 1930. The pier is used as part of Thames Europort
Thames Europort.  This is a Roll-on/roll-off port facility which port is used only for freight, both trailer and container based. There is a large pontoon berth which can take two ships at a time for loading and discharging. The terminal has regular freight links with Zeebrugge, Dunkirk and Vlissingen
Dartford International Ferry Terminal. DIFT – this is all freight transport
Sources
Cement kilns. Web site
Dartford Borough Council. Web site
Port of London Authority. Web site
Porteus. Dartford Country
Stoyel and Kidner. The Cement Railways of Kent.

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