Postcard of the month - #240 - July 2020

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The Fire Station, West India Dock Road, Poplar

The provision of a modern fire station at Poplar was a major priority for the Metropolitan Fire Brigade. Plans for the Poplar station were produced in 1867 and the building was completed in 1869 at a total cost of 2,429 and 10s.

It was of brick and was three bays wide, with a symmetrical street front. The appliance room was in the centre, behind double doors. The residential accomodation was provided upstairs. The initial strength of the station was for seven men, a steam engine, a manual engine, two escapes and four horses. In 1900 an open-sided iron ladder-shed was built in the yard to the south of the main building. The adoption of motorized fire engines by the London Fire brigade led to a reduction in the number of stations required as a station could cover a wider area.

A report in 1920 called for the closure of 15 stations, including this one. The station closed that year and sold to the London Salvage Corps, who used the building until 1928. It passed to T F Maltby Ltd., stevedores, for use as storage. The site was redeveloped in 1959-1960 and finally passed to Crome & Mitchell, nut merchants. It was demolished during 1987-88 for road improvements.

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