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Archives in London and the M25 area


Identity Statement

Reference code(s): LCC/CE/RB
Held at: London Metropolitan Archives
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Date(s): 1862-1972
Level of description: Collection
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Extent: 3.5 linear metres
Name of creator(s): LCC | London County Council x London County Council


Administrative/Biographical history:

The Chief Engineer was responsible for overseeing construction and maintenance of LCC buildings, bridges, roads and tunnels. He was also responsible for flood prevention measures, drainage and sewerage and other matters of public health.

The maintenance and improvement of traffic facilities for crossing the Thames, whether by bridge, tunnel or ferry, was an important part of the work of the LCC. It was responsible for ten of the Thames bridges: Albert Bridge, Battersea Bridge, Chelsea Bridge, Hammersmith Bridge, Lambeth Bridge, Putney Bridge, Vauxhall Bridge, Wandsworth Bridge, Waterloo Bridge and Westminster Bridge. In addition the Council maintained about 50 other bridges, over rivers, streams, canals, railways and roads. These included the bridge over Deptford Creek, Barking Road Bridge and Highgate Archway. The pedestrian tunnels at Greenwich and Woolwich, and the vehicular tunnels at Rotherhithe and Blackwall were also maintained by the Council, as was the Woolwich Ferry. In addition, it was responsible for over 6 miles of river embankment walls, Greenwich Pier and pipe subways allowing access to mains without having to excavate the road surface.

In addition, the LCC was the central authority for street improvements in London, coordinating the work of the Borough Councils because important traffic routes usually run though more than one of the Boroughs. The most important part of this work involved considering improvements to allow greater traffic flow, particularly as the number of cars on the roads increased.

The London County Council Chief Engineer and County Surveyors:
1889: J Gordon and C Dunscombe
1890 Sir Alexander Binnie
1901 Sir Maurice Fitzmaurice
1913 Sir George Humphreys
1930 Sir Peirson Frank
1946 Sir Joseph Rawlinson
1962 FM Fuller


Scope and content/abstract:

Records of the London County Council Chief Engineer's Department relating to roads, bridges, tunnels and ferries, including report on the proposed new Battersea Bridge, 1881; report by John Wolfe Barry on the practicality of the Blackwall Tunnel scheme, 1889; further reports regarding Blackwall Tunnel, 1890-1898; Blackwall Tunnel Engineer's Office visitor's books, 1895-1897; reports regarding railway bridges, 1894-1903; reports on LCC bridges, 1890-1960, including Vauxhall Bridge, Southwark Bridge, Charing Cross Bridge, Westminster Bridge, Waterloo Bridge and Hammersmith Bridge; Highway Development Survey, 1937; Strand underpass descriptive brochure, 1964; Chief Engineer's report about new terminals for the Woolwich Free Ferry, 1963; bye laws for the management and regulation of bridges over the River Thames, 1895.

Plans and drawings, 1862-1972, including Woolwich Ferry approaches and piers; Old Lambeth Bridge; Chelsea Bridge; Stanley Bridge, Fulham; steamboat piers; Victoria Embankment; the new County Hall embankment wall; street improvements associated with various 'Artizan's Dwellings Schemes'; Greenwich electricity generating station; road widening schemes; Waterloo Bridge; Surrey Lock Bridge, Rotherhithe; Deptford Creek Bridge and Lea Bridge.

Photographs of the demolition of the old Waterloo Bridge and the construction of the new bridge, 1934-1939.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

LCC/CE/RB/1: Reports and Returns; LCC/CE/RB/2: Visitor's Book; LCC/CE/RB/3: Plans and drawings; LCC/CE/RB/4: Photographs.

Conditions governing access:

Available for general access

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copyright: Depositor

Finding aids:

Please see online catalogues at:

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Acquired with the records of its parent body, the London County Council. Further accession received in 1995 (ACC/3558).

Allied Materials

Related material:

For London County Council Chief Engineer's Department see LCC/CE/DO; LCC/CE/GEN; LCC/CE/MD; LCC/CE/MD; LCC/CE/PH; LCC/CE/RB and LCC/CE/WAR. For records relating to those bridges maintained by the Corporation of London (including London Bridge, Blackfriars Bridge and Tower Bridge) see CLA/018-022.

Publication note:

For a detailed history of LCC road and bridge maintenance works see Achievement: A Short History of the London County Council by W Eric Jackson (1965), LMA Library reference 18.0 1965 and The London County Council 1938, LMA Library reference 18.7 SER 4.

Description Notes

Archivist's note:

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
April to June 2009

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