000777 Brigade St, Brigade House
Brigade House used by Lab One in 2002
This was erected as a fire brigade station in 1871. Throughout the early part of the C19th, the only hope in the event of a fire, was that neighbours would turn out to save possessions and that there was a water supply nearby.
In 1851, No 3 Montpelier Row was gutted and in 1862 No 74 Tranquil Vale burnt down.
A meeting was held in Alexandra Hall to establish a volunteer fire brigade and in 1872 the Blackheath station opened with one officer and two men. This grew to one officer and 12 men and in May 1872, the Blackheath Brigade could turn out with horses harnessed and ready for action in 3mins 30 secs.
The history of the local brigade proved uneventful and the only major blaze they had to tackle was in January 1880 when No 60 Granville Park was destroyed. "Unfortunately, the calamity was made far worse becaues volunteer fire fighters claimed they were hampered by the local professionals and the building blazed away while rivals stood on the pavement and argued" (Neil Rhind).
The motorised fire engine rendered the station unnecessary and it closed in 1909.
Ebenezer Smith used it as a repository for storing furniture
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