Images of Sugarhouses ... Links and Sources

... but who were the architects ?



CityEarliest YrNo. StreetArchitectYr of ImageType of ImageSource 
Londonc1650sBattersea-1752engravingCollage 6720VIEW
London<1712Paul's Wharf-1749etchingBucks' Panorama of LondonVIEW
London1736268 Whitechapel Rd / Fieldgate St-1805plansJohn Clark Powell - Whitechapel Estate - British Library Crace Collection portfolio 16 item 22 
London1759Execution Dock, Wapping-1803aquatintCollage 31835VIEW
London1759207 Upper Thames St-1828pencilCollage 4634VIEW
London1759207 Upper Thames St-1830engravingCollage 4631VIEW
London1759207 Upper Thames St-1880etchingCollage 4628VIEW
London1759207 Upper Thames St-1930photographCollage 49580VIEW
London1763Pennington St-1865watercolourCollage 20269VIEW
London1776203 Upper Thames St-1828pencilCollage 4634VIEW
London1776203 Upper Thames St-1830engravingCollage 4631VIEW
London1787Offices of Phoenix Fire Office, Lombard StThomas Levertonno image, yetbook ref.Colvin 2008, pp.612-3 
London1789Late Mr Maud's, next to Royalty Theatre, Well St (see Horwood 1790s)-c1817engravingV&A Blog - GuestVIEW
London178948 Wellclose Sq-1875advertisementLinda WhybrowVIEW
London178948-49 Wellclose Sq-1961photographCollage 121575VIEW
London178948-49 Wellclose Sq-1961photographCollage 121576VIEW
London178948-49 Wellclose Sq-1961photographCollage 121577VIEW
London178948-49 Wellclose Sq-1961photographCollage 121579VIEW
London1790202 Upper Thames St-1880etchingCollage 4628VIEW
London1790202 Upper Thames St-1930photographCollage 49580VIEW
London1794Phoenix Fire Office Fire Engine House, Cockspur StThomas Leverton1982illustrationThings Phoenix 1782-1982, p.41 
London1794Well St / 27 Wellclose SqCharles Dysonc1851plans & elevationsLMA MBO/PLANS/440, 441 and 442 
London1794Well St / 27 Wellclose Sq-1911photographCollage 121569VIEW
London1794Well St / 27 Wellclose Sq-1911photographCollage 121588VIEW
London1794Well St / 27 Wellclose Sq-1913printed photographThe Small House, Peter Guillery, p.71 
London1794Well St / 27 Wellclose Sq-1920photographCollage 121628VIEW
London1794Well St / 27 Wellclose Sq-1920photographCollage 121630VIEW
London1797St Mary St / Davenant St-1960-70photographThe East End in Colour, David Granick - TH LC14642 
London1797St Mary St / Davenant St-2017photograph & textDerek Kendall / Survey of London - WhitechapelVIEW
London1798Mulberry St, Commercial Rd-1820watercolourCollage 22131VIEW
London1798Mulberry St, Commercial Rd-1820watercolourCollage 22130VIEW
London1799Duncan St-1833floor plan (lease)TH P/CRV/8 (?) 
London1805Phoenix Fire & Pelican Life Offices, Charing CrossJoseph M Gandyno image, yetbook ref.Colvin 2008, p389 
London1808Virginia St, Breezers Hill, Pennington St, Princes Sq, Denmark St-1808aquatintCollage 31837VIEW
London182327 Alie St-1856floor planBRO 36772 Box 6VIEW
London1830Bath Terrace, Back Lane-1908photographTH P01554 
London1834Dock St-1971photographCollage 117590VIEW
London1834Dock St-1973photographCollage 281236VIEW
London1834Dock St-1973photographCollage 281225VIEW
London1834Dock St-1973photographCollage 281184VIEW
Londonc1838Offices for Phoenix Fire Insurance Co, Lombard StJames Lansdownc1838no image, yetColvin 2008, p.599 
London1843Sugarhouse Lane, Stratford-2002photographHugo GlendinningVIEW
London1843Sugarhouse Lane, Stratford--printed photographEssex & Sugar, Frank Lewis, 1976 
London185178 Leman StCharles Dyson1851lithographCollage 22763VIEW
London1873Deal St, MENT-2017photographRightmoveVIEW
London1878Thames Refinery, Silvertown [Tate]James Blake1878-1981photographsT&L Our History
London1878Thames Refinery, Silvertown [Tate]James Blake1878-1981printed photographsSugar & All That, Hugill, 1978 
London1881Plaistow Wharf, Silvertown [Lyle]J & R Houston, built John Mowlem1960photographSugar GirlsVIEW
London1881Plaistow Wharf, Silvertown [Lyle]J & R Houston, built John Mowlem1881-1960printed photographsThe Plaistow Story, Lyle, 1960 
Aberdeen1776Regent Quay-1970photographsCanmoreVIEW
Bristol1612St Peter's Hospital-post-1902postcardBMVIEW
Bristol1728Lewins Mead-1994photographEnglish Heritage - NMRVIEW
Bristol1728Lewins Mead-2001photographBMVIEW
Bristol1847Counterslip-1873newspaperIllust. London NewsVIEW
Bristol1847Counterslip-1879floor planBRO 36772 Box 6VIEW
Bristol1847Counterslip-?photographPaul Townsend / FlickrVIEW
Edinburgh1823Sugarhouse Close-2015photographsCanmore VIEW
Glasgow1669138 Gallowgate-1846watercolourBurrell CollectionVIEW
Glasgow1789Sugar Sampling Room at rear of Tontine, TrongateJames Craigno image, yetbook ref.Colvin 2008, p277 
Glasgow185259 Washington St-1965photographCanmore SC 659153VIEW
Glasgow1865Port Dundas-variousphotographsCanmoreVIEW
Greenock1852Drumfrocher Rd (Berryyards)-1890s?photographMcLean Museum & Art GalleryVIEW
Greenock1850sKer St (Glebe)-2012photographsTerry RobinsonVIEW
Greenock1868West Shaw St-abt 1970photographsCanmoreVIEW
Greenock1875Roxburgh St- photographCanmore SC 455028VIEW
Greenock1875Roxburgh St-1930s?photographMcLean Museum & Art GalleryVIEW
Greenock1884James Watt Dock WarehousesWalter R Kinipple (?)2007photographsAndrea BrownVIEW
Greenock1884James Watt Dock WarehousesWalter R Kinipple (?)2014photographsBuildings at RiskVIEW
Hull1733Lime St-1868newspaperIllus. London NewsVIEW
Hull1733Lime St-1880 copyfull site, ground planEast Riding Archives DDHE/34/6/4 
Liverpool1816Matthew St [Brancker]-1843ground planLiverpool MercuryVIEW
Liverpool1847Vauxhall Rd [Fairrie]-?photographLove Lane LivesVIEW
Liverpool1847Vauxhall Rd [Fairrie]-1925printed photographSugar, G Fairrie, 1925 
Liverpool1872Love Lane [Tate]-variousphotographsliverpoolpicturebook.comVIEW
Liverpool1872Love Lane [Tate]-printed photographs100yrs of Sugar Refining, Watson, 1973 
Southampton1743The Friary-1930sphotographs (book)Sug Ref in Southampton by Drake 
Southampton1743The Friary-1970floor plan (book)Sug Ref in Southampton by DrakeVIEW
Stockton1780Quayside-1910photographPicture Stockton ArchiveVIEW
Whitehaven1712Duke St-1730spainting(s)Mathias Read's 'Bird's Eye View' - at both The Beacon Museum, Whitehaven and Wordsworth House, CockermouthVIEW
Whitehaven1712Duke St-undatedcopper engraved printR Parr - from Mathias Read painting - prints available on line, and as frontispiece of JV Beckett 'Coal & Tobacco' 
York1680Skeldergate-1718etchingTancrad Robinson (YAT)VIEW
?---1864sketch (book)Essay on Sugar by Rbt NiccolVIEW
?--Duncan Stewart & Co Glasgow1888section drawing (book)Sugar - Handbook by Lock & NewlandsVIEW
- to be continued       


Notes on Architects ...


* James Blake (1849-1919) ...

A Scot, an engineer, the son of the owner of Blake, Barclay & Co sugar machinery manufacturers, James Blake arrived in Liverpool in 1875 as Tate's Foreman Engineer at the Love Lane refinery. Soon after, Henry Tate purchased a derilict shipyard in Silvertown and sent Blake to report on it's use for the possible expansion of the business. Tate agreed with Blake's findings and told him to go and build a refinery within the year. It took 9 months and began production in 1878. "But there is no doubt that he did an excellent job of Thames Refinery and can be regarded as its architect."
Reluctantly at first, James Blake continued at Thames Refinery for many years, becoming Chief Engineer, and a shareholder and director.
(Sugar and All That, by Antony Hugill, 1978)
(Image McLean Museum & Art Gallery, Greenock)


* James Craig (1744-1795) ...

Born in Edinburgh, Craig claimed the winning design for the layout of the New Town of his home city, but although it was not built true to his plans, he had considerable input into the working out of the detail. He was also employed as a town planner in Glasgow, where the layout of streets in Blythswood and Meadowflatt appear to have been his, but not the architectural detail. (Colvin)


* Charles Dyson (c1800-1868) ...

Born c1800 Tottenham, Mdx (son of Charles & Elizabeth Dyson, All Hallows Tottenham. Sally, his sister, bpt 1796) (census and PRs)
1823-4 Land surveyor Waltham Cross, Essex (Pigot's Dir)
1841 Surveyor age 38 unmarried The Grove, Stratford, Essex (census)
1851 Surveyor age 49 unmarried The Grove, Stratford (census)
1855 Architect & Surveyor, Stratford Grove (PO Dir)
1861 Architect & Surveyor age 60 unmarried The Grove, Stratford (census)
1863 Architect & Surveyor, Stratford Grove (White's Dir)
1868 His death 3 Aug age 68 at his home in The Grove, Stratford. Will proved 29 Aug, under 18,000, executors a Hotel Keeper and a Brewery Executive. Buried All Hallows Tottenham (probate index and PR)

Works ...
c1851 Well St / 27 Wellclose Sq, Whitechapel. Plans for additions to Sugarhouse for John Wagener. (above) [John Wagener lived at Langtons Hall, Hornchurch, Essex (Lewis)]
1851 78 Leman Street, Whitechapel. Sugarhouse for Charles & John Bowman. (above) [John Bowman lived just 7 doors from Dyson in The Grove, Stratford, Essex (Lewis and census)]
1862 Devon's Rd, Bromley St Leonard, Mdx. Plans for 9 acres of dwellings for the working classes. (London Evening Standard)


* Joseph Michael Gandy (1771-1843) ...

A promising youngster, who then travelled in Italy having to return in a hurry in 1797 owing to his sponsor's bankuptcy and the advances of Napoleon's armies. He practised on his own, but initially found little work in either Liverpool or London, and with a large family finances were often difficult. Especially noted for his independent approach to architectural aesthetics. (Colvin)


* J & R Houston ...

(Nothing yet) Description of Lyle's refinery at Silvertown in The Grocer, 5 May 1883, copy published in The Plaistow Story, by Oliver Lyle, 1960, along with many early photographs.


* Walter Robert Kinipple (1832-1901) ...

Born 1832 St Anne Limehouse, London, s/o George Topliff Kinipple, shipwright & Elizabeth Sarah his wife (PRs)
Married 1858 Billericay, Essex (GRO)
1859> at least four children (PRs)
1858-65 living in Limehouse (Electoral Regs)
1861 age 28, civil engineer & surveyor, 13 Paynton Ter, Limehouse (census)
1865 elected to Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE records)
1871 age 38, civil engineer, 55 Esplanade, Greenock (census)
1875 office at 17 West Blackhall St, Greenock (Val Rolls)
1875 house at 107 Eldon St, Greenock (Val Rolls)
1878-88 house in Westminster (Electoral Regs)
1881 age 48, civil engineer, Eldon St, Greenock (census)
1883 death of wife Sarah at Greenock (Death Index)
1889- 98 at 11 Gloucester Terrace, Regent's Park, London (Electoral Regs)
1891 age 58, civil engineer, 11 Gloucester Terrace, Regent's Park (census)
1901 age 68, retired civil engineer, 51 The Drive, Hove, Sussex (census)
Died 1901 aged 69 Hove, Sussex. Probate 1902 granted to son and two daughters. 18,881. (Dundee Evening Telegraph and probate)

Works ...
Pre-1865 considerable work regarding the piers and tidal docks at Greenwich, and various graving docks along the Thames. (ICE records)
<1870> Engineer to the Greenock Harbour Trust, and designs for, and construction of, the James Watt Dock and the Garvel Graving Dock at Greenock. (Obit, Dundee Evening Telegraph)
1884-6 (probably) - James Watt Dock Sugar Warehouses, Greenock (Buildings at Risk Reg Scotland)


* James Lansdown (1796-1838) ...

Involved with works around Regent's Park, close to were he lived. Shortly before he died he designed offices for Phoenix Fire Insurance Co in Lombard Street. (Colvin)


* Thomas Leverton (1743-1824) ...

The great London sugar houses of the 18th and early to mid-19th centuries intrigue architectural historians as only two have been ascribed to an architect - a Charles Dyson of The Grove, Stratford, Essex, about whom very little is known. Dyson operated in the middle of the 19th century and designed the vast sugar house which stood in an expansive yard on the east side of Leman Street behind No. 78, as well as an extension to a sugar house on Well Street behind the west side of Wellclose Square, St Geo East. [see above]
Undoubtedly these buildings would have been designed by an architect, as surely no proprietor would have built anew without the advice and design from such a man, especially bearing in mind that at this time architects also acted as structural engineers, and these huge structures were both architecture and engineering. Also, the larger examples usually took up whole blocks and were often accompanied by the necessary auxiliary buildings - counting houses, stores, warehouses, scum houses and the like, even sometimes the owner's dwelling - all things that required the skills of an architect.
The name of Thomas Leverton is a tantalising prospect as a second candidate for the design of one or more of these structures. We know a fair bit about Leverton but there is an air of mystery surrounding the full extent of his work. Not only were many of his buildings demolished early on, but there has always been a feeling that some of his output was not recorded, hence he falls behind other, perhaps lesser, architects in the records. Undoubtedly he was a talented man - he designed Woodhall Park at Watton, Hertfordshire, dating from the late 1770s; and one of the great terraced houses of London - No. 1 Bedford Square, Bloomsbury (1778-82) - was also his work, as were the interiors of at least three other houses in the Square.
More pertinent to us here is the fact that he was the first Surveyor to the Phoenix Fire Office - for 29 years from their founding in 1782. The Phoenix was set up by the sugar house owners as they were finding it very difficult to obtain adequate insurance for both their premises and the great amount of merchandise that they warehoused on site. As Surveyor, Leverton designed their offices in Lombard Street in the City (circa 1787, demolished) and their Fire Engine House on Cockspur Street, Charing Cross (1794, demolished).
We know that in 1803 he exhibited a design at the Royal Academy for the 'elevation of a Sugar House now building at New York, North America' - not bad for a man who probably never visited that country. We also know from the first edition of the Dictionary of National Biography that 'he also erected large premises for sugar-boilers in London and New York'.
More pertinent to the sugar industry in London, we know that Leverton designed Plaistow Lodge, Bromley, Kent (1780) for Peter Thellusson, an immensely successful banker, trader, merchant and speculator of French/Swiss Huguenot origin. Thellusson, a Director of the Bank of England, also had a stake in several sugar houses in London. In addition, in the mid-1790s, Leverton almost certainly designed a house for Matthew Whiting, a Director of the Phoenix, which survives as 2 Butcher Row, Ratcliffe. Whiting owned a sugar house on Broad Street, Ratcliffe (present day The Highway) which was destroyed in the great Ratcliffe fire of 1794. In 1795, Leverton and seven of the Directors of the Phoenix, including Matthew Whiting, were Governors of the London Hospital at Whitechapel.
Clearly, therefore, Leverton occupied a space within a circle of privilege in the capital and would undoubtedly have been 'the man to talk to' for any sugar house proprietor looking to build new premises. Whilst no signed drawing or conclusive document has yet come to light showing that he did in fact design a sugar house in London, he is a prime candidate. Hopefully, before too long, a sugar house or two can be added to his canon. (Written for this page by Andrew Byrne)

[Portriat of Thomas Leverton, Phoenix Surveyor, by John Russell RA - Phoenix Assurance and the Development of British Insurance, Vol 1, by Clive Trebilcock, p.116.]


* Duncan Stewart & Co, Glasgow ...

Sugar machinery manufacturers established in 1840 by Peter Stewart in Anderston, Glasgow. Joined by his son Duncan, and in 1864 moved to larger premises at London Road Ironworks in Bridgeton. Became a limited company in 1891, liquidated in both 1902 and 1920s, restructured, etc, acquired by Booker Bros 1956.

1871 Introduced hydraulic pressure cylinders for sugar cane mills.
1880 Developed new markets for sugar refining equipment aropund the world.
1888 The section drawing (above) gives a general idea of a sugar refinery, as designed by Duncan Stewart & Co, Glasgow, to turn out centrifugal sugars.
1910 Supplied complete sugar processing plant to Ciego de Aula, Cuba.
1920s Included plant for refining sugar beet.
(Glasgow University Archives UGD052/1/2/8)
(Grace's Guide to British Industrial History)