Plaque

Harland & Wolff plaque

Erection date: 1994

Inscription

These ornamental gates stood a the entrance to Harland & Wolff Ltd, shipbuilders, ship repairers and engineers in Woolwich Manor Way. The company opened on the site in 1924 and closed in 1972.
Leisure Services 1994

Site: Harland & Wolff factory gates (2 memorials)

E16, Lyle Park

The steps are rather grand for a public park and look to us as if left over from a now-demolished substantial building (factory, head office, etc.) but we can find no evidence that any such building ever existed here. London Gardens Online gives "The Ordnance Survey map of 1951-52 shows the terrace fronting the river with a bandstand surrounded by a circle of trees and ornamental gardens, and a flight of steps leading down to a recreation ground..."

This park was created when, in 1924, Sir Leonard Lyle (1882 - 1954, of Tate and Lyle) gave the land to West Ham, land that a 1914 map shows mainly undeveloped. It seems that Lyle never used this ground commercially. We wonder when and why he acquired it. Was it ground that he planned to expand into? Or did he acquire it specifically to gift to West Ham?

This prompted us to research the T&L history in the area, and it's not simple. Henry Tate and Leonard Lyle set up their factories in the area independently of each other. The Newham Recorder reports that the Tate site has been in continuous use since Henry Tate arrived in 1878, so that's the huge site shown as 'Tate and Lyle Sugars' on current Google Maps, on the north bank of the Thames, south of City Airport.

About 5 years later Abraham Lyle set up his own factory, very close to Tate. We think this is the site marked on the same 1914 map as "Plaistow Wharf (sugar refinery)", a little to the east of this park.

In 1921 the companies merged but kept their separate factories. At some point, we don't know when, the Plaistow Wharf site was given up and the activities were concentrated on the Tate site. Oddly current Google maps still show a site marked as "Tate and Lyle", to the north west of Knights Road, practically where the Lyle factory was, but perhaps this is an overflow site for the current Tate and Lyle further east.

Note that the H&W gates come from a factory site a few miles to the east which has no connections with Lyle or the sugar factories. The gates are presumably only in this park because they are big and this was the nearest public site that could take them.

This section lists the subjects commemorated on the memorial on this page:
Harland & Wolff plaque

Subjects commemorated i

Harland & Wolff - Galleon's Point

Shipbuilders, ship repairers and engineers with an address in Woolwich Manor ...

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This section lists the subjects who helped to create/erect the memorial on this page:
Harland & Wolff plaque

Created by i

Newham Council

West Ham was merged with parts of Barking and Woolwich to form the London Bor...

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This section lists the other memorials at the same location as the memorial on this page:
Harland & Wolff plaque

Also at this site i

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