Surrey Docks Farm


The site that Surrey Docks Farm occupies has a fascinating and eventful past – as a shipyard and timber yard, and as a river ambulance station that conveyed smallpox and fever patients to isolation hospitals downriver. It has also experienced dramatic events such as the floods of 1928 and the Blitz bombing of the Surrey Docks in 1940. A new Heritage Lottery Funded project will be researching all these events, and with the help of archaeologists from the Thames Discovery Programme, will survey the site and its foreshore for the physical evidence, to create a history trail around the farm from the findings.


At the moment the project is looking for people who can help with information, and would love to speak to anyone with knowledge of the previous uses and events on the site, for example:

- The shipbuilding / breaking and timber yards on the site from the 18th century to 1880

- The river ambulance station, especially if you know of anyone who worked here or came through here as a patient 1884-1932

- Any uses of the river ambulance station or its pier later in the 1930’s, perhaps related to wartime preparations or hospital use

- The 1928 floods or WW2 Blitz, e.g. memories of anyone who experienced these events on the site or in the surrounding streets

- The demolition of the bomb-damaged river ambulance station

- Any uses of this land between 1945-1985

Any information is welcome, whether personal experience, stories you’ve heard, or family history related to this site. If you’re able to help with any of the above or would like to know more, please contact the project co-ordinator, Germander Speedwell, details via the web link here.