Open Day at Ballast Quay

Moving on from the dreariness of yesterday’s post about what’s happening to Lovell’s Wharf now, something a little cheerier. This fabulous photograph was sent to me my Hilary Peters, who long-term Phantophiles will know was the one-woman driving force behind saving the stunning buildings along Ballast Quay (where the Harbourmaster’s Office is, next to the Cutty Sark) and the creation of the cutest garden in Greenwich.

She has been writing a history of Ballast Quay, which I am dying to read, and I won’t have long to wait, as she’ll be selling copies on a special open garden day in June.

Put the 8th and 9th June in your diaries, folks – and get the chance to walk through that usually-locked gate (and meet the wonderful Hilary…)


the attachments to this post:

River001 hilary
River001 hilary


5 Comments to “Open Day at Ballast Quay”

  1. rp says:

    thats a stunning picture – do you know who it was taken by?

  2. Fabulous, isn’t it. I don’t know, but it has to be at least 1960s. Hilary sent it to me.

  3. Hilary Peters says:

    It is late 1950′s. The sailing barge Pretoria is still outside the pub.
    That was gone by the time I got there in 1963.
    The steam crane is still on the wharf (Union Wharf)which I rented from Morden College from the later 1960′s. You can just see the high wall that shut the wharf off from the road.
    I don’t know who took it but the photo is the property of the Greenwich Heritage Centre Search Room, Artillery Square, Woolwich. (well worth a visit)

  4. Nathan says:

    I was on the Thames Path a couple of weeks ago looking at one of the historical plaques. So much has disappeared even since they were put up. Is great to see photos like this, such a shame there isn’t more of it left – much more interesting than the bland boxes that are going up everywhere. Looking forward to reading all Ballast Quay in June!

  5. Hilary Peters says:

    So as not to disappoint:
    I am not (yet) writing a history of Ballast Quay the road. Just the wharf.
    I hope to do the road later.
    Here is my note on names:
    The Ballast Quay was Crowley Wharf, later Anchor Iron Wharf, or Robinsons, (now disappeared but it was where the anchor is). Ballast was brought down from the ballast pits at the bottom of Maize Hill and shipped from here. Crowley House was on the site of the power station. There were still Crowley’s around in the eighteenth century renting land from Morden College.
    The name Union Wharf dates from the union of England and Ireland in 1800 when the pub was renamed the Union Tavern. The street (Eastwards from the pub) was called Union Wharf and the wharf was called Union Wharf (sometimes Port of London Wharf) until the 1960’s. The street Westwards of the pub was always called Ballast Quay.
    The confusion of names lasts throughout the nineteenth and twentieth centuries on maps. In practice, the two names were interchangeable.