Old Images of Purfleet (Purfleet-on-Thames), Essex

Old picture of Purfleet Purfleet-on-Thames Essex England published 1752

Glimpse history through old images of Purfleet (Purfleet-on-Thames), Essex, England.

Purfleet Flood 1953

1953 saw bad flooding across the east of England. Several members of the royal family headed off to Tilbury, Mablethorpe, and Sutton on Sea to visit afflicted residents, as well as Cambridge to see some of the relief efforts.

Meanwhile a young Queen Elizabeth II visited Purleet, where houses marked the highest water line point with white lines, almost at the top of front doors.

Queen Tours Flood Areas (1953) – British Pathé on YouTube

Dartford Tunnel 1957

The 1950s construction of the Dartford Tunnel between Dartford in Kent and Purfleet in Essex was a major piece of engineering which would help relieve East London of much of its heavy traffic.

While this newsreel doesn’t show the local area except for a view across the River Thames, it’s a notable part of the area’s history in the twentieth century.

Tunnelling Under The Thames (1957) – British Pathé on YouTube

Purfleet Station 1986

The focus on this home movie, recorded on 19th March 1986, is on the British Rail passenger and freight trains, but it also shows the railway station platforms and bridge.

British Rail Purfleet March 1986 – Soi Buakhao on YouTube

Historic Book

Extract from: A review of England and Wales, in which the historical events of every town, village, and place are briefly expressed, by J. Gronow

Published in 1849

Page 217

PURFLEET , Essex , 18 miles from London , a town
ship , between Erith Reach and Long Reach , has a
considerable public magazine for gunpowder , which
is stored in several detached buildings , all bomb
proof . There are also here some very extensive lime
works .

Historic Book

Extract from: Leigh’s New Pocket Road-book of England and Wales
Containing a Description of Every Principal Town and Remarkable Place ; to which are Added Pleasure Tours to the Most Picturesque Parts of the Country
, by Samuel Leigh

Published in 1840

Page 415

PURFLEET ( Essex ) , near the Thames , is chiefly inha
bited by persons engaged in the neighbouring lime and chalk
pits . Here are immense powder magazines belonging to
Government . The heights on the river side command fine
views . Par . Pop . 804 .

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