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Report - Streatham Pumping Station, London - December 2014

The_Raw

28DL Regular User
Regular User
#1
Streatham Common pumping station was built in 1888 to a Moorish design and survives today on Conyers Road. The pumping station was constructed for the Southwark and Vauxhall Water Company. The company was formed by the merger of the Southwark and Vauxhall Water Companies in 1845 and became part of the publicly owned Metropolitan Water Board in 1903.

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This was more of a sneaky peek than an explore, I thought I'd post it up anyway as I can't find many pictures online. The pumping station is still in use so every entrance was heavily padlocked. I had to make do with climbing up the windows to get a glimpse of the inside so the pictures aren't great, not helped by filthy windows and piercing orange lights inside one of the rooms. I set every floodlight PIR off in order to get this close, nobody appeared so I carried on regardless. Like I say, not a proper explore as such but it's a beautiful little building that I'd been wanting to see the inside of for ages as it's just down the road from me. I was only able to see lots of control panels so I guess the pumping machinery must be underground. Anyway, here's some sketchy pictures:


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The control room, as you can see the orange lights made it difficult to photograph....
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This was the main circular part of the building, interested to know where those stairs lead to....
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This report was brought to you via much alcohol, thanks for looking :thumb
 

kevin arnold

28DL Member
Regular User
#5
Re: Streatham Pumping Station - London, December 2014

i got quite excited when i saw the title of this report, thinking someone has finally managed to do the whole of this place :) the main hall is/used to be doable:

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i got a few more pics but they're buried somewhere on my old hard drive... the best bit of the building, where the old machines are seems to be accessible only via a padlocked external door and it's not connected to the rest of the building. when you're in that round main hall there is another door there leading to other parts of the building but it's alarmed. loud alarm too.
 

The_Raw

28DL Regular User
Regular User
#6
Re: Streatham Pumping Station - London, December 2014

Ah you did way better than me then....I certainly couldn't find a way in, everything was padlocked. I was pretty pissed up though :p:
 

The_Raw

28DL Regular User
Regular User
#8
Re: Streatham Pumping Station - London, December 2014

Interesting yeah, need a sober revisit after seeing Kevin's reply though!
 

Thermionic

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
#11
Great pictures, good to see a bit of what it looks like inside these days. I grew up at 64 Conyers Rd in the 50's/60's. Mr Tysdale who was the Chief engineer and lived in the house in the grounds once took me round (and down!) the whole place. I did a project at school on waterworks. In my time there was also a small narrow gauge railway that ran around part of the site for moving heavy plant; pumps, pipes, etc. The long gallery building on the north side was the main workshop and the stores were in the arches under the elevated railway line that goes to Mitcham. The large round building with the stairs that go down (with the alarmed door) leads to the lower floor that is above the well-head. This was at the time the deepest artesian well in London, possibly still is. In the early 60's the water table in London had dropped to a level such that pumping from it was ceased, and the pumps with added new plant were used to transfer water from elsewhere up to the reservoirs at Norwood and probably still are. I believe that the well may have been further extended in depth and may now be also used for extraction. The well shaft had a powered lift cage platform that went down almost to the water level. I went down on it with Mr Tysdale, don't think that would happen these days! The high tower part of the building still has some of the hoists for lifting machinery and plant I see from your photos, though it looks like the heavier chain hoists that used to be in there is not in place anymore, just the lighter ones.
 

Thermionic

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
#13
Hi, Glad you found it interesting. Since then I've done a bit more research. Back in my day the front between the building and Conyers Rd was lawns and flower beds. I notice that this is now mainly paved and has a new round raised 'feature'. Researching the London Ring Water main, I found that Streatham is a pumping station for this and the ring main passes under the site. I believe the 'feature' is the top of the sink shaft that goes down to the ring main. The new control plant (blue cabinets) in the Station is almost certainly associated with this system.
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David Bate

28DL Member
28DL Member
#15
Hi, just found this Thread. I'm demolishing a Workshop on Fallsbrook Road and the Main runs straight through the site from this Station. I was wondering if anyone had any archives on the network, or if you know where they could be found? I just want to know how deep it is and what its made of?
 

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