Barge House Street, SE1
Barge House Street is a renamed section of Upper Ground Street.

Old Barge House Stairs once marked the outflow of a stream - though more an open sewer which ran in a wide loop.

Embankment walls were build along the river bank at Upper Ground and sewers carried off water either to the river or south to St George’s Fields. Until 1809, when the Surrey and Kent Sewer Commission obtained permission to build new main sewers, the whole area was subject to flooding whenever there was an exceptionally high tide and most of the ground was too marshy for building.

However, from at least as early as the 14th century there was a fringe of houses along Upper Ground.

Sometime before 1420 the land was farmed out to John, Duke of Bedford. In 1655, William Angell, a grocer from London, bought the area for 500. The land comprised ’ten messuages, eighty cottages, twenty tofts, twenty gardens, twenty orchards, ten acres of land, fifty acres of meadow, thirty acres of pasture and one acre of woodland’. A large part of the property was in lease to various tenants.

Angell carried out a certain amount of building in the neighbourhood of Upper Ground and he laid out Angell Street (now Broadwall) between the Old Barge House and Melancholy Walk (now Surrey Row) along the line of Broadwall.

The many warehouses that grew up in the nineteenth century hereabouts created a dense urban grain which was once commonplace along the southern shore of the Thames.

Oxo Tower Wharf is a refurbished warehouse building - once both Stamford Wharf and part of a former power station - still lying north of Barge House Street.

The Victorian 19th century Nelsons Wharf was demolished in the 1970s and its location was was landscaped into a park area Bernie Spain Gardens.

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