This part of the River Ouse was the principal dockside for seagoing vessels until the 19th Century. The warehouse was built in 1875 for the storage of imported goods liable to excise duty until it closed in 1958. A brief history of its intervening years can be found here It has recently been converted into luxury apartments and offices which includes an escape ladder for the occupants in the event of flooding.
There would certainly have been goods here that would attract excise duty for the largest warehouse in the photograph is the Tobacco Warehouse, which when it was built with 27 million bricks in 1901, was the largest brick warehouse in the world and indeed may still be. The area between it and the Stanley Warehouse in front of it has been nicknamed "pneumonia alley" because it is usually in shade and in this breezy location acts as a wind tunnel. I was stood on an unusually windless day on the Mersey ferry doing the triangular loop from the Wirral peninsula across the river and back.
I'm on dry land here by the Waterloo Dock and the converted East Waterloo warehouse apartments to the right. The Liverpool Dock complex is massive and runs in a continuous row along the Mersey, there are still lots of working docks but it always blows my mind when I imagine what it was like in the past when its 7½ miles was at full pelt with cargoes leaving and landing from all over the world. Of course the most photogenic of the old Liverpool warehouses are those of the Albert Dock but as I have contrived over various rounds of ABC Wednesday to feature them I'm managing to resist the urge to include them again.
Journeying south to the Thames River here is Oliver's Warehouse. Built in 1869-70 for George Oliver in a Tudor/Venetian Gothic style to house general cargo ultimately its main use was the special storage facilities for that favourite beverage of the British, tea . This was one of the first warehouses in Wapping to be converted into apartments and its famous residents have included Alex Guinness and Cher.
Do you get the impression I like taking pictures of Victorian waterfront Warehouses?
An entry to ABC Wednesday, a journey through the alphabet, this week sojourning at W here