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Not Brentford New

Boatmen's Institute, Brentford

Howard Webb provided this postcard of the Boatmen's Institute, built 1904.
Pretty brick built, stucco'ed first floor building
The building remains today.

The postcard was in the 'St George Series'. Howard Webb also provided a scan of the back which shows the postcard was used as an invitation:
Boatmen's Institute, Brentford.
The Committee request the pleasure of your Company at the Opening Ceremony, when Mrs. Robert Miller will declare the Institute open and F.A. Bevan, Esq. will preside.
Tuesday, Dec.13th, 1904 at 3pm.

Pauline Grant writes (June 2014): my Father George Edward Turner was born in the Brentford Mission in December 1912, his Parents William and Elizabeth were bargees and worked very hard in all weathers and also bringing up their children on the Amos barge, it makes me proud of them even today. My Dad worked from about the age of 14 on the canal until the horses were retired from pulling the barges in I think the late fifties early sixties, Blue Peter went and did some filming at the time, My Dad then went to work for Chiswick council until he retired.

The photo was taken in winter or early spring and shows quite a desolate scene of bare trees, a foreground of mud and a chilly glimpses of the River Brent in the background.

In contrast Fay Tywdell's 1997 photo shows the well-maintained building surrounded by lush vegetation. The page includes a little of the history of the Boatmen's Institute too.

Published March 2012; updated October 2015