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Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0074 ACC/3639
Held at: London Metropolitan Archives
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Date(s): 1889-1904
Level of description: Collection
Extent: 0.55 linear metres
Name of creator(s): Maudslay Sons and Field Ltd | marine and mechanical engineers and boiler makers


Administrative/Biographical history:

Henry Maudslay (1771-1831) opened his works in 1810 on land adjoining Westminster Bridge Road, Lambeth on what is now the site of Lambeth North Underground Station. In 1820 he combined with Joshua Field to form Maudslay Sons and Field, which became renowned both for the manufacture of machine tools and for the construction of marine engines and iron ships. They also leased the southern part of Pedlar's Acre beside the River Thames in Lambeth, which they used for the construction of iron ships and the fitting of steam engines to ships' hulls. On this site they built a pumping engine for Lambeth Waterworks in 1831 as well as constructing and launching in 1832 the "Lord William Bentinck" said to be the first iron vessel on the Thames. One of their marine engines powered the Great Western Steamship which crossed the Atlantic in 1838. Their Lambeth foundry was damaged by a fire in the 1840s. Plans for its restoration dated 1847 are held by the LMA amongst the archives of the Metropolitan Buildings Office (ref. MBO/PLANS/167-169).

The records in this collection all date from the final years of the company from 1889 when it appears to have become a limited company until it finally ceased business in 1904. After several years of financial difficulty, the directors agreed on 4 October 1899 to the appointment of Ernest Cooper and W. Sampson as receivers and managers of the company. Freehold property in Burdett Road and Westminster Bridge Road, Lambeth was sold. Possession of the Lambeth yard on Pedlar's Acre reverted to Lambeth Borough Council. In 1909 it was acquired by the London County Council as part of the site for County Hall. Maudslay Sons and Field Limited continued to operate on a much reduced basis from their other yard in Tunnel Avenue, East Greenwich until 1904 when all activities appear to have ceased.

The demise of the company resulted in several suits in the Chancery Division of the High Court of Justice in 1898-1900, Maudslay v. Maudslay Sons and Field Ltd, Norbury v. Maudslay Sons Ltd, and Bassett v. Maudslay Sons and Field Ltd.


Scope and content/abstract:

Records of Maudslay Sons and Field Ltd, marine and mechanical engineers and boiler makers, 1889-1904, consisting of agendas and draft minutes of directors' meetings and meetings of shareholders, cash books, sales records, production records and wages records.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:


Conditions governing access:

Available for general access.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copyright rests with the depositor.

Finding aids:

Please see online catalogues at:

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

The records were presented to the Greater London Record Office [now LMA] on 8 December 1995 by the Lord Chancellor's Department under Section 3 (6) of the Public Records Act 1958.

Allied Materials

Related material:

Other records relating to Maudslay, Sons and Field Limited are held by the Science Museum Library. They include a portfolio of photographs of marine engines, boilers and machinery 1892 (MS 225) and a collection of manuscript and printed material principally relating to the work of Joshua Field c.1805-1865.

Publication note:

For further information see:- "On Lambeth Marsh. The South Bank and Waterloo", Graham Gibberd, 1992, page 64 (LMA Library ref 86.1 GIB) "The Survey of London Vol. XXIII Lambeth Part 1", 1951, pp 62-63 (LMA Library ref. 86.1 LCC) "County Hall. Survey of London Monograph 17 Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England", 1991, page 11 (LMA Library ref. 18.45 SUR) "Maudslay, Sons and Field as General Engineers" by J. Foster Petrie in Transactions of the Newcomen Society vol. XV, 1936, pp 36-61.

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:
July to October 2009

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