London Museum of Water & Steam

London Museum of Water & Steam Steam power comes alive at the London Museum of Water & Steam! *Our buildings are not currently open - our opening is outside only*

Based in the historic buildings of the former Kew Bridge Waterworks, the London Museum of Water & Steam tells the story of London's water supply and the amazing pumping engines that helped to make London the great city it is today.

We have the world's largest collection of stationary steam pumping engines, many of which you can see working at weekends. For more information about us, our engines and steam schedules and our special events, please visit www.waterandsteam.org.uk.

Operating as usual

We are delighted to introduce our new team member who will be looking after all things Families and Community for the ne...
12/04/2021

We are delighted to introduce our new team member who will be looking after all things Families and Community for the next 9 months:

Hi, I'm Emma 👋 I'm super excited to be joining the team as the Engagement Coordinator. I've worked with lots of schools, families & groups at some fab museums and am also a Scout Leader. I can't wait to help welcome our amazing local community & visitors back in May! 😁

We are delighted to introduce our new team member who will be looking after all things Families and Community for the next 9 months:

Hi, I'm Emma 👋 I'm super excited to be joining the team as the Engagement Coordinator. I've worked with lots of schools, families & groups at some fab museums and am also a Scout Leader. I can't wait to help welcome our amazing local community & visitors back in May! 😁

Liz and Gemma had such a great time talking to David from Our Barn Community on their podcast.With shout outs to our fri...
07/04/2021
London Museum of Water and Steam Podcast

Liz and Gemma had such a great time talking to David from Our Barn Community on their podcast.
With shout outs to our friends and supporters, updates on our famous cats and listen out for exciting loco plans 🚂

Joining us this time around we have Gemma and Liz from The London Museum of Water and Steam letting us know a little about themselves, the museum and the won...

😁 We can't stop smiling thanks to the wonderful news that we've been granted Culture Recovery Fund money from Department...
06/04/2021
DCMS Culture Recovery Fund - London Museum of Water & Steam

😁 We can't stop smiling thanks to the wonderful news that we've been granted Culture Recovery Fund money from Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and Arts Council England! Thanks to them, we are #HereForCulture
Read about it in our latest blog from Director, Liz Power
https://waterandsteam.org.uk/dcms-culture-recovery-fund/

This last lockdown has been hard for everyone, and hard for the Museum to cope with. Therefore, it seemed fitting that as the lockdown started to ease we received the wonderful news that we have been award a grant from...

🥳 We were thrilled to hear we have received funding thanks to the government’s #CultureRecoveryFund so that we can conti...
02/04/2021
media2.giphy.com

🥳 We were thrilled to hear we have received funding thanks to the government’s #CultureRecoveryFund so that we can continue to be here for you and #HereForCulture
Thank you!
News about reopening dates and times coming soon! 💦🚂

Stone, wood, metals and plastics have all been used for water pipes. But did you know that the Romans experimented with ...
01/04/2021

Stone, wood, metals and plastics have all been used for water pipes. But did you know that the Romans experimented with giant pasta? That's why shapes like penne and rigatoni have holes through them. It worked with cold water but went soft when the water was hot so the idea had to be abandoned.

We've loved sharing our engine collection with you. It was never a competition, but, the Boulton & Watt Engine got the m...
31/03/2021

We've loved sharing our engine collection with you.

It was never a competition, but, the Boulton & Watt Engine got the most likes across all our channels. So at over 200 years old, you can still rule social media!

We leave you with an archive photo of volunteer Ivan Fear driving the engine and operating those beautiful swirling levers in 1975.

Last but definitely not least is the 100" engine (1869) with a 54 ton beam! It was thought the beam was unbreakable due ...
29/03/2021

Last but definitely not least is the 100" engine (1869) with a 54 ton beam! It was thought the beam was unbreakable due to its size, but it snapped in 1879. The repairs are still visible today if you can venture to the top floor. Although it ran for 65 years with repairs in place, it would be difficult to insure for operation today.
Have you enjoyed our engine series?

The 90" (1846) is a true giant of the steam age, named for its cylinder diameter. The drawing gives an idea of the scale...
27/03/2021

The 90" (1846) is a true giant of the steam age, named for its cylinder diameter. The drawing gives an idea of the scale of this engine, the beam alone weighs 32 tons! A 'monster' in the words of Charles Dickens, but how would you describe it?

Thomas Wicksteed, 'the little train' may be our most loved engine. We get more phone calls and emails about it than any ...
25/03/2021

Thomas Wicksteed, 'the little train' may be our most loved engine. We get more phone calls and emails about it than any other! It's a surprisingly modern engine from 2009, built to replicate 19th century waterworks railways.
Why do you think waterworks had railways, what were they for?

The Waddon (1910) came to us from Croydon after it was retired in 1983, making it the last steam water-pumping engine in...
23/03/2021

The Waddon (1910) came to us from Croydon after it was retired in 1983, making it the last steam water-pumping engine in active service in the UK. The black and white photo shows it in pieces, before it was reassembled and restored.
Are you surprised that water was still pumped by steam engines as late as the 1980s?

It's World Water Day! Just think...💧 How have you already used water today?💧 Are there images of water in your home? Cou...
22/03/2021

It's World Water Day! Just think...
💧 How have you already used water today?
💧 Are there images of water in your home? Could be the sea, rain, a lake, river, snow, ice or steam. You might be surprised.
💧 Think of different animals which live in water, not only fish!
💧 Fun for little ones - imagine the floor is made of water, make stepping stones to move around.
💧 Drink a glass of water and be part of the water cycle! Where will that water go next?

Known as The Triple (1910), it's the Hathorn Davey Triple Expansion Engine. Its impressive presence in the Steam Hall pr...
21/03/2021

Known as The Triple (1910), it's the Hathorn Davey Triple Expansion Engine. Its impressive presence in the Steam Hall provides an amazing backdrop for school trips, weddings, filming, conferences and parties. But it has its own story as an incredibly efficient and modern steam engine, pumping 6.3 million litres per day, using the steam 3 times and able to operate without the constant attention needed for older engines. Its design pre-empted that of internal combustion engines. But did engines like this actually signal the end of the age of steam?

Meet Maudslay (1838), not our famous cat of the same name, but the engine. It's the only surviving large engine by Mauds...
19/03/2021

Meet Maudslay (1838), not our famous cat of the same name, but the engine. It's the only surviving large engine by Maudslay, Sons & Field of Lambeth in the world and it's stood on the same spot where it was built for 183 years!
What do you think it weighs?

It's the landmark we couldn't have imagined reaching, 1 year today since we first closed our doors. But there are plenty...
18/03/2021
One Year On - London Museum of Water & Steam

It's the landmark we couldn't have imagined reaching, 1 year today since we first closed our doors. But there are plenty of ups as well as the downs and we cannot wait to welcome you back, hopefully in May! Read the new blog by Museum Director, Liz, here
https://waterandsteam.org.uk/one-year-on/

Wednesday 18th March 2020 is a date that the staff at London Museum of Water & Steam will never forget, it was the date we closed down the Museum for the first time during the COVID 19 pandemic. We had...

The Hindley Water Wheel (1902) isn't an engine but an important part of our collection. Many mills, mines and factories ...
17/03/2021

The Hindley Water Wheel (1902) isn't an engine but an important part of our collection. Many mills, mines and factories had water wheels before they had steam engines. This quite modern example from the Duke of Somerset's estate also supplied water to the village drinking fountain.
Can you think of other ways water was moved from A to B before steam engines?

The promised update on the Boulton and Watt engine is here! With a bright blue valve and plans for installation in our n...
16/03/2021
Progress on the Boulton and Watt Part 2 - London Museum of Water & Steam

The promised update on the Boulton and Watt engine is here! With a bright blue valve and plans for installation in our new blog.

Well it was predictable that whatever our plans were the virus would probably throw a spanner in the works, and it has taken longer than we hoped to deliver the first step in the Boulton and Watt restoration. But the...

Time for the Fire Engine! (1880-1914) On loan to us from the London Fire Brigade Museum, and much loved by all, includin...
15/03/2021

Time for the Fire Engine! (1880-1914) On loan to us from the London Fire Brigade Museum, and much loved by all, including our Museum cats. With a coal fire underneath, steam is made in the boiler to powerfully pump water to put out the fire. You can see from the black and white 1900 photo how these engines were pulled by horses.
Can you spot the ladder, the hose and the boiler?

The Museum Team wishes a Happy Mother's Day to all you marvellous mums!
14/03/2021

The Museum Team wishes a Happy Mother's Day to all you marvellous mums!

The age of steam was overtaken by electricity and more powerful electric pumps were installed in 1944. Of the originals,...
13/03/2021

The age of steam was overtaken by electricity and more powerful electric pumps were installed in 1944. Of the originals, just the Number 1 Pump remains in our Electric House.
Our steam engines still inspire such nostalgia and affection in a way our Number 1 Pump doesn't quite seem to. Why do you think that is?

The Easton and Amos (1863) operated at Clifton Waterworks, Northampton until retired c.1930. It was taken apart and kept...
11/03/2021

The Easton and Amos (1863) operated at Clifton Waterworks, Northampton until retired c.1930. It was taken apart and kept in storage until it came to Kew Bridge and was put back together by volunteers in 1977-1978. It's a firm favourite on school trips!
Scroll through archive photos to see the 1970s restoration.

A newer engine today, our Diesel Engine (1934). The first photo shows the Allen Diesel as 1 of 4 originally built to mee...
09/03/2021

A newer engine today, our Diesel Engine (1934). The first photo shows the Allen Diesel as 1 of 4 originally built to meet summer water demand. A fascinating snapshot of working life when we were a pumping station.
The Allen now shares its home with artists as the Diesel House Studios.

“If nobody else is going to invent a dishwashing machine, I’ll do it myself.”On International Women’s Day we introduce d...
08/03/2021

“If nobody else is going to invent a dishwashing machine, I’ll do it myself.”

On International Women’s Day we introduce dishwasher inventor, Josephine Cochrane, born on this day, 8th March 1839. Her invention included compartments for different sized dishes and pressure washing, recognisable in modern dishwashers such as the one on our Waterworks Gallery wall!
What do you wish existed? Could you invent it yourself?

The Dancer's End (1867) once lived on the private estate of Lord Rothschild. The beams and flywheel give it a fantastic ...
07/03/2021

The Dancer's End (1867) once lived on the private estate of Lord Rothschild. The beams and flywheel give it a fantastic dancing appearance, but the name actually comes from the area near Tring where it lived.
What do you think of the design? Was it built to be efficient or to be beautiful to look at?

05/03/2021
Bull Engine

Here's a video of the Bull in action from our YouTube channel. Find out more about the restoration and how long it took to get it back in steam!

The Bull Engine (1857) is the only surviving example of its type still in operation, and in its original location! Unlik...
05/03/2021

The Bull Engine (1857) is the only surviving example of its type still in operation, and in its original location! Unlike other Cornish engines, it has no main beam, and takes up less space.
Do you think the Bull is a good name for it?
To find out more about what makes it special, look out for the video of it in action later today.

Association of Independent Museums
04/03/2021

Association of Independent Museums

Job vacancy - @waterandsteam is looking for an Engagement Coordinator for 9 months maternity cover. Are you passionate about community and family engagement? Can you use social media to communicate with audiences? Join the team here: http://ow.ly/HURD50DPZ5c

The Boulton & Watt (1820) is our oldest engine, at over 200 years old! It originally operated at Chelsea Waterworks but ...
03/03/2021

The Boulton & Watt (1820) is our oldest engine, at over 200 years old! It originally operated at Chelsea Waterworks but was moved upriver to its present location.
Unfortunately the water at Chelsea wasn't very clean 💩 but thankfully was much better upriver at Kew Bridge.
It was retired in 1944 and restored in 1975. We have a blog post coming soon to find out more about our current Boulton & Watt project!

Blog post from Museum Director, Liz Power, about our new Engagement Coordinator vacancy. We can't wait to hear from you ...
02/03/2021
New Team Member Needed! - London Museum of Water & Steam

Blog post from Museum Director, Liz Power, about our new Engagement Coordinator vacancy. We can't wait to hear from you about what you would bring to the role!

Even in the middle of a pandemic life carries on, and we are delighted that Gemma will be soon going onto Maternity leave, and LMWS will have a new baby in its little team by the summer. That does however...

01/03/2021

And here's the Benham in action!

The engine was carefully restored by volunteers in 2014 and now operates electrically at the Museum entrance.

Did you guess where this engine used to supply water?

It was the Workhouse, specifically Mylees Workhouse in Salisbury. Workhouses closed in 1930 but many continued to operate as Public Assistance Institutions, and this engine wasn't retired until 1970. It was acquired by the Museum in the early 70s.

Click to read a mini interview with Museum Director Liz Power, as part of the Brentford Thru My Lens Meet the Community ...
01/03/2021

Click to read a mini interview with Museum Director Liz Power, as part of the Brentford Thru My Lens Meet the Community series!

🏘🏢🏛🏡 Meet the Community 🏘🏢🏛🏡

Firstly please introduce yourself...

I am Liz Power, and I am the Director of the London Museum of Water & Steam, which is a Georgian Pumping station and Museum in the heart of Brentford. www.waterandsteam.org.uk

How long have you lived or worked in Brentford?

I joined the Museum in October 2018, and spent the first few months at the Museum exploring the area.

What is your favourite spot or building in Brentford?

Well, I know I should say the 17 grade 1 or 2 listed building that make up the Museum, but can I also add how very special the playground of Green Dragon School is, a wonderful hidden green oasis.

What do you feel is special about living or working here?

Brentford is such a creative community to be part of, full of talented and generous people. We are very lucky to play a small part in the area.

Have you discovered anything new about the community during the last year?

When we opened up the Museum grounds over the summer in 2020 it was amazing to see people re-emerge, some who had never been to the Museum came to explore for the first time. The local support we have had has been amazing

Tell us about your chosen photograph - why you chose it...

This photo is of Myself and Gemma on our first day back on site after the first lockdown in 2020. We were so excited to be back, and the photo says everything about the Museum, with the towers of Brentford looking down on us. To me it reminds me of the excitement I feel when I get to be at the Museum.

*Liz thankyou so much for being a part of this... everyone knows how much I adore our museums! I really do look forward to when you can throw open those gates again and hear the museum alive with the sound of happy children*

The first engine of the month is also the littlest, the Benham (1898). The engine operates a pump underneath it which ra...
01/03/2021

The first engine of the month is also the littlest, the Benham (1898). The engine operates a pump underneath it which raised water from a well.

The people who drank water supplied by this pump were some of the very poorest in Victorian society, living in harsh conditions familiar to Oliver Twist. Where do you think they lived? Comment below 👇

🌎 Did you know we hold the world's largest collection of Cornish engines? We'll be celebrating our extraordinary engines...
26/02/2021

🌎 Did you know we hold the world's largest collection of Cornish engines?
We'll be celebrating our extraordinary engines throughout March, from mini machines to majestic monsters.
Do you have a favourite?

This Valentine’s Day card is purrfect from Maud and Wicksteed! 😻😹
14/02/2021

This Valentine’s Day card is purrfect from Maud and Wicksteed! 😻😹

Address

Green Dragon Lane
London
TW8 0EN

Buses: 65, 237, 267, 391. All buses stop at Kew Bridge. Main Line Rail: Kew Bridge (South West Trains from Waterloo via Clapham Junction). Tube: Gunnersbury (District Line then 237 or 267 bus) or Kew Gardens (District Line then 391 bus) South Ealing (Piccadilly Line then 65 bus to Kew Bridge)

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Comments

All ready for Musical Mark and tiger day ... although think he'll rub this off his face by lunchtime!
Are you a current or former museum and gallery professional working in the UK or internationally? We are inviting colleagues in the sector to complete a survey that aims to explore the perspectives and experiences of current and former museum and gallery professionals in relation to graduate employability in the sector. Our survey can be accessed at https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdekeCXoKtluvSF-r1Y_JXOKTMVaTZ36UB8PKlpjhWyGI3QwQ/viewform here (closing date: 18th of June). We would appreciate if you could take the time to complete our survey and circulate it amongst your colleagues. This survey is part of the project Curating Expertise: Towards a Museum Forum @ King’s, with which we aim to build an interdisciplinary Museum Studies teaching and research agenda at King’s College London. We are interested in colleagues’ thoughts about the knowledges, skills and experience that museum studies graduates should possess to be employable in the sector today. We are particularly keen to hear from those interested in contributing, in one form or another, to the delivery of a London-based but globally focused new Museum Studies teaching provision. Whilst we are interested in collaborating with London-based institutions / professionals, we would be delighted to also hear from colleagues across the UK and internationally. Whilst we appreciate this is a time of uncertainty for the sector, it seems a critical moment to reflect on how we can train future generations of resilient museum professionals. If you wish to get in touch, you can reach us at [email protected] and [email protected]. Best wishes, Dr Stuart Dunn (DDH) and Dr Serena Iervolino (CMCI)
Waddon Engine. 7th March 2020.
The new £20 note is meant to feature Margate Lighthouse but it looks like something else to me.
An interesting museum of the engineering required for pumping and provision of water supply. Also fascinating steam engines and locomotives. Great children’s experiential activities with water pumping and water circulation kept many kids engaged until closing time.
From a few years back:
🎩 The Greatest ShowKIDS! 🎬 7th August 2019 London Museum of Water and Steam 9.30am-3.15pm £30 ❤️Does your child LOVE the Greatest Showman? We do too! ❤️ From the very beginning to the very end your child will be immersed with the music and scenes from The Greatest Showman along with a few magical extras ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Your child will.. 🎤Sing songs and act out scenes from The Greatest Showman 🎪Take part in circus skills 😍Make new friends and develop social and team work skills 🎬Learn new acting and vocal skills ⭐️Gain confidence 🤩Be involved in something that they can be proud of! 😀Make lasting memories 🥳Have lots of FUN! Register your interest by commenting below!
We are sorry to announce that due to a lack of volunteers the railway will not be running this weekend. We apologize for any inconvenience.
Thumbs up 👍 lots of hands-on exhibits, lots of trains for my 3.5-year-old train enthusiast and nice and friendly staff. Loved the Splash Zone and had a lovely lunch at the cafe.
An event at Crofton Beam Engines that might be of interest to you guys! www.croftonbeamengines.org/event/science-fair-james-watt-celebration-25-26-27-may/
Visited on Sunday and this is the result :)