The ability to pump water directly from the Thames under pressure (700 lb per psi) and distribute through 180 miles of cast iron pipes across London brought hydraulic energy into view as a vital competitor to the emerging electric power industry in London. The Falcon Wharf Pumping Station (1883 – 1977) stood on the site that is occupied today by Falcon Point flats. The London Hydraulic Power Company (LHPC) was set up by an Act of Parliament in 1884 and sponsored by railway engineer Sir James Allport. The hydraulic system’s pioneering technology was used to power workshop machinery, cranes, lifts, theatre (London Palladium and London Coliseum) and as a back-up to Tower Bridge. The system was also used to supply fire hydrants across London, mostly inside buildings.
20”x16” (406 mm x 508 mm)