The Thames Iron Works 1837–1912: a major shipbuilder on the Thames investigated

Daniel Harrison


The Thames Iron Works and Shipbuilding Company, one of the great private enterprises of the Victorian age, launched some of the most famous warships of the time from its slipways at the mouth of the River Lea. A pioneer of shipbuilding in iron, the yard’s expertise was also deployed in ground-breaking civil engineering projects using iron structures. Several important components of the yard were investigated at a Crossrail site on the Limmo peninsula, including engineering workshops, a furnace, a mast house and mould loft building, and a slipway. An account of the history of the company places it in the wider context of London’s 19th-century shipbuilding industry.

Crossrail Archaeology Series - 2

MOLA 2016 ISBN 978-1-907586-34-7 Ppk 114pp 103 bl/wh and col ills

The Crossrail archive for the Limmo peninsula site is available online.


'… undoubtedly an attractive and informative book. The book shows how industrial archaeology can be presented to a wider audience without any loss of scholarship. It is well written and clear, combining thorough technical analysis with explanations that should make sense to those less familiar with the topics covered.'  Peter Rowsome in London Archaeologist 2017

'… this slim, attractive and reasonably priced work records research of high quality, exemplifies current practice to good effect, and does much to further the detailed study of the structural and artefactual evidence for heavy iron and steel shipbuilding, a maritime aspect of industrial archaeology which has been too long neglected.' Robert Mowat in The International Journal of Nautical Archaeology 2018