Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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Felixstowe Docks and Railway

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of Felixstowe

A half mile line.

1875 The Felixstowe Dock and Railway Company (Statutory Company - Incorporated in 1875) was founded by Colonel George Tomline, a prominent local landowner. Business commenced under the name of “The Felixstowe Railway and Pier Company”. [1]

1877 The first F. R. & P. Co. passenger train ran from Westerfield to Felixstowe, but in 1879 this line was transferred to the Great Eastern Railway.

1879 The company title was changed to the “Felixstowe Railway and Dock Company”, and powers were given to construct a dock, warehouses and rail sidings. Later in the same year, the company title was again changed, to the “Felixstowe Dock and Railway Company”, as it is today.

1882 Work commenced on the Dock Basin.

1886 The Dock was opened for trade, and the first commercial vessel entered on 7th April.

1886 The Great Eastern Railway acquired 13.75 miles of railway formerly owned by the Felixstowe Railway and Dock Company. The present company owns the dock portion of the original undertaking, with 33 chains of railway in connection therewith. [2]

1889 Colonel Tomline died. The Dock was left to Captain Ernest Pretyman.

1904 A flour mill and grain storage silo were built on the north side of the Basin.

1914-18 The Port was requisitioned as a Royal Navy Destroyer and Mine-sweeper Base.

1939-45 The Port was requisitioned as a Royal Navy MTB and Air Sea Rescue Base.

1951 The Port was acquired by Mr. Gordon Parker, an agricultural merchant. New warehouses were erected for copra, wheat, maize and sugar. RN oil tanks were leased for the storage of linseed, ground-nut and palm oils.

1953 The Port suffered a severe set-back, when the disastrous East coast floods swept over the entire Dock area, causing extensive damage, and destroying the two wooden piers at the basin entrance.

1959 Work commenced on the new East Quay. Bulk grain and liquid tanks were added.

1961 Felixstowe Tank Developments Ltd. was formed. More tanks were added.

1963 Two million cubic feet of warehousing were added. The Felixstowe Cold Store was opened.

1964 The Oil Jetty was constructed, extending 1,100 feet into the waters of Harwich Harbour.

1965 No.1 Ro/Ro berth was completed, and made available at all states of the tide.

1966 Building work commenced on Landguard Container Terminal.


See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. [1] Port of Felixstowe
  2. The Stock Exchange Year Book 1908