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TOUR OF THE MONTH
ON THIS DAY IN LONDON
25th May 1905 Born today: Binnie Barnes, London, actress (Adv of Marco Polo, Diamond Jim)
25th May 1878 Gilbert/Sullivans opera HMS Pinafore, premieres in London
Walthamstow Pumphouse Museum
Two of the only surviving Marshall steam engines in the world.
Location: 10 South Access Road, Walthamstow, E17 8AX
Description: This museum was formerly known as The Lea Valley Experience, and from April 2012 has been transformed into London's new steam and transport museum.
It's within the grand Grade II listed Low Hall Victorian Pumping Station and the main feature are the massive and quite rare Marshall C class steam engines.
The museum is also home to a growing collection of transport, artifacts and displays, interpreting the nationally important steam and transport first achievements of the Lea Valley Corridor.
The 19th century building was constructed of London stock brick with blue engineering bricks around the doors and windows. In 1896 the two 1885 bays were enlarged and a third bay was added to the left of the building. The Marshall C class steam engines, boilers, and plant equipment were added then.
The engines also provided the power to drive these machines. Originally fuelled by coal, the steam plant was converted in the early 1900s to work from domestic refuse which was burnt elsewhere on the site.
However, by the early 1970s the general state of the boiler made the raising of steam then a rather haphazard affair. The installation of electrically powered pumps then sealed the engines' fate, and a large part of the 1885 buildings was demolished.
The pump house today contains what are believed to be the only surviving pair of C class horizontal steam engines built by the Lincolnshire firm of William Marshall Sons & Co.
The engines are also Grade II listed along with the steel beams within the building.
The installation of these engines and a boiler cost 220.