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Abbey Mills Pumping Station Grounds

Introduction

Features of Abbey Mills include the listed pumping station and associated buildings, as well as lodges, gates and gate piers. The historic part of the site has opened for London Open House.

Visitor Access, Directions & Contacts

Access contact details

The site is open by prior appointment only.

Directions

London Overground/Rail/DLR/Tube (Central, Jubilee): Stratford then bus. DLR: Pudding Mill Lane

Owners

Thames Water

History

Abbey Mills Pumping Station was named for its proximity to the former site of Stratford Langthorne Abbey, the pumping station was built to lift lower level sewage into the Northern Outfall Sewer that took sewage from all over London to Beckton.

An extravagantly ornamented building it was nicknamed 'the Cathedral of Sewage'. Its 2 Moorish-style chimneys were demolished in WWII for fear they would be used as bomber landmarks; they had been unused since steam power had been replaced by electric motors in 1933. The new pumping station to the south was built in 1994-7, since when the old Pumping Station has been used as standby, for example in times of storm.

Features & Designations

Designations

  • Conservation Area

  • Reference: Three Mills
Key Information

Type

Designed Urban Space

Purpose

Ornamental Garden

Principal Building

Water Disposal Site

Survival

Extant

Open to the public

Yes

References

Contributors

  • London Parks and Gardens Trust