Friday, May 13, 2011

Thomas Cubitt

Burham works were established around 1850 by Thomas Cubitt, the Victorian master builder. From 1815 Cubitt was responsible for many large developments in London including Belgravia, Pimlico, much of Bloomsbury and the area around Clapham Common. He also built the east front of Buckingham Palace, and constructed three thousand feet of the Thames Embankment. Outside the capital his work included parts of Brighton and Osborne House on the Isle of Wight. Cubitt's success was due to his then revolutionary method of employing vast numbers of craftsmen as a team under his direct control rather than dealing with independent tradesmen. This enabled him to build a reputation for meeting deadlines on time and on budget. Cubitt set up the Burham works towards the end of his life in order to provide a guaranteed supply of good quality bricks.

1. Surely those concrete pillars are marked on the map as 'Limekilns'? I think the chalk was excavated from the pits, brought to the kilns and baked to make cement.

2. The narrow gauge railway I mentioned is marked as 'Tramway'.

3. As for the tunnel, I take it you mean the dashed line. It's a bit too out-of-focus for me to read the lettering but I doubt if there's a tunnel there.

4. Tell what I'll do. I live only two miles from there on Blue Bell Hill, when I have time over the next few days, I'll pop down with both our maps and actually see for myself.

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  1. These pictures are of the the West Kent Cement Company not Cubbits Burham works it was fed with chalk quarried from Margretts pit near scarborough lane and feed by railway which passed by the bungalow at mill bay.

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  4. I am researching the Burham Brick, Lime and Cement Works (BBLC) that was established by Thomas Cubitt in 1852. These pictures are part of the Wouldham brick works owned by another. BBLC was actually situated just behind Eccles village, spawned 3 quarries in its 89 production life, these quarries are part of the beautiful sights you see when you look at Blue Bell Hill.

    1. As i mentioned in an earier post this is The West Kent Works an extension of the Aylesford gault brick and cement co also known as Margetts, Mill bay, and confusingly Burham Works to distinguish it from their Aylesford site.ran from 1885 - 1926.