Ratcliff Gas Light & Coke Company

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1823 to 1875

Located in



The Ratcliffe Gas Light & Coke Company was incorporated by an Act of Parliament in 1823. It’s gas works at Wapping were “for lighting with gas the parishes of St. Botolph, Aldgate, St. Paul, Shadwell, and parts of St. George-in-the-East, St. John, Wapping, Mile End Old Town and Ratcliff” (AIM25). The company merged with the East London Gas Light Company right next door sometime in 1831-1835 and then was taken over by the Commercial Gas Company in 1875.

Gas works were used to produce and store flammable coal gas. Coal was mined in Britain and then shipped on a barge up rivers or on trains to the gas works. There it was burned to create the gas, which was then purified and put into the gas holders until needed for consumer use to light streets and buildings. The process also created coke, tar, ammonia, and sulphur as by-products.

51.50581, -0.05515 Wapping Gas Works