The Great Eastern Dock, Isle of Dogs

This was the site where, in the 1850s, Isambard Kingdom Brunel built The SS Great Eastern (originally known as Leviathan). The project was a complete fiasco and was Brunel's last attempt at a major feat of engineering. The ship weighed 18,000 tons, was 700ft long and 85ft wide. The launch was a disaster as it was to be launched into the Thames sideways but the ship refused to budge; a man was killed and Brunel looked like a complete fool. A further operation was required to put hydraulic rams behind the ship to force it into the water. Eventually it was launched and went into service, but was not and great success and it was scrapped in 1889. Read all about it here:

Peter Reed and Carrol Jo Hummer faved this
  • D W S 9y

    I reckon that IKB deserves a group of his own, so I've set one up. Please would you consider adding any of your Brunel related images to the pool:

  • Jon's pics 9y

    I reckoned that too, never got round to it and now you've beaten me to it! Well done!

    I've added it (and some others too) to the pool. I have some photos somewhere of the open day for the pump house and tour of what is now the East London Line tube tunnel, will try and find them and add those too,
  • D W S 9y


    We seem to be getting up a head of steam already.
    I'm particularly fascinated by the Great Eastern story, so any images relating to the build and launch site are really interesting.
  • Drew Tedlock 9y

    This would be a nice addition to the Macro Decay pool:

  • D a v e 9y

    BBC link seems to have been changed. Is this the right one?
  • Jon's pics 9y

    It's not the page I linked to. The BBC did a series of documentaries called "The Seven Wonders of the Industrial World" with a study of the building of the Great Eastern. Pity they've removed it as the page gave loads of information about the ship.

    Drew: Somehow missed your comment, so belatedly have posted to your group.
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Taken on January 29, 2006
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