From Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search

Template:Other places Template:Infobox UK place Mortlake is a suburban<ref name="GLA 2002">Template:Cite book</ref> district of the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames on the south bank of the River Thames between Kew and Barnes. Historically it was part of Surrey and until 1965 was in the Municipal Borough of Barnes. For many centuries it had village status and extended far to the south, to include East Sheen and part of what is now Richmond Park. Its Stuart and Georgian history was economically one of malting, brewing, farming, watermen and a great tapestry works. A London landmark, the Mortlake Brewery or Stag Brewery, is on the edge of Mortlake.

The Waterloo to Reading railway line runs through Mortlake, which has a pedestrianised riverside, two riverside pubs and a village green. The Boat Race finishes at Mortlake every April.


The Mortlake and Barnes Common ward of the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames has proved highly marginal. In the 2010 local elections local Liberal Democrats lost all three seats to local Conservatives to form an administration on the Council. Richmond Park, the constituency which includes Mortlake, also changed from Liberal Democrat to Conservative in the 2010 general election. The London Assembly constituency South West, which includes Mortlake, includes among its representatives Tony Arbour (Con).


File:Temple of British Worthies Sir John Barnard.jpg
This is a contemporary bust of Sir John Barnard who lived much of his adult life as MP in one of a few Georgian mansions built here as one of London's upper class. It is kept at Stowe House, Buckinghamshire.

Mortlake lay in the hundred (county subdivision) of Brixton all of which faded into obscurity.

According to Domesday Book (1086) the manor and parish of Mortlage (by which name Mortlake was then known)<ref name="Lysons"/> was held by Archbishop Lanfranc of Canterbury when its assets were: 25 hides; 1 church, 2 mills worth £5, 1 fishery, 33 ploughs, Template:Convert of meadow, wood worth 55 hogs. It rendered a large £38 plus 4s 4d from 17 houses in London, 2s 3d from houses in Southwark and £1 from tolls at Putney per year to its feudal system overlords.<ref name="Lysons">Template:Cite web</ref> The manor belonged to the Archbishops of Canterbury until the time of Henry VIII, when it passed by exchange to the Crown. From the early part of the 17th century until after the English Civil War, Mortlake was celebrated for the manufacture of tapestry, founded during the reign of James I at the Mortlake Tapestry Works.

Colston House's forebear was built by Thomas Cromwell, Earl of Essex then acquired by Edward Colston, major benefactor and investor to the port city of Bristol. This was pulled down in 1860. John Barber, Lord Mayor in 1733, a suspected Jacobite opposed to the 'Georgian' House of Hanover but Member of Parliament for the City on the strength of his opposition to Walpole's protectionist excise scheme, was buried in Mortlake in 1741. He had given land to extend the churchyard. Sir Henry Taylor, KCMG, the dramatic poet, lived in Mortlake in the 19th century.<ref name=m/>

Sir John Barnard, Lord Mayor of London in the year 1737 and also an MP, used public addresses and private campaigns to outstanding effect in supporting the government against the Jacobite movement in 1745.<ref name=m/>

Since 1845, the Oxford and Cambridge Boat Race has had its finish point at Mortlake, marked by the University Boat Race stone just downstream of Chiswick Bridge. Several other important rowing races over the Championship Course also either start or finish at the stone. The first National School in Mortlake was built providing compulsory education at primary level in 1869, followed by an infants school in 1890 and county level, into secondary level school in 1906.

File:John Dee memorial plaque at S Mary the Virgin Mortlake.jpg
John Dee memorial plaque in the church of St Mary the Virgin Mortlake
File:Sir Richard Burton's Tomb.jpg
Sir Richard Burton's Tomb at St Mary Magdalen’s Roman Catholic Church cemetery

Mortlake's relatively small bus garage in Avondale Road, was closed in 1983. Much of the site was rebuilt as housing but a small area near the railway was retained as a turning point for buses, with toilets and a small office. Mortlake garage had opened very early in the 20th century and originally catered for horse buses. In later years the stables were converted into the traffic office.


Template:Main Mortlake's most famous former resident is John Dee (1527 – 1608 or 1609), mathematician, astronomer, astrologer, alchemist and adviser to Queen Elizabeth I, who lived at Mortlake from 1565 to 1595 except for the six years between 1583 and 1589 when he was travelling in Europe.<ref name="Dee Society">Template:Cite web</ref> His house no longer exists but it became the Mortlake Tapestry Works and at the end of the 18th century was a girls' school.<ref name="Dee Society"/>

The cemetery of St Mary Magdalen’s Roman Catholic Church Mortlake contains the tomb of Sir Richard Burton.<ref name="Listed">Template:Cite web</ref> Former British Prime Minister Henry Addington who, as Lord Sidmouth, was Ranger of Richmond Park, and after whom the park's Sidmouth Plantation is named, is buried at St Mary the Virgin Mortlake.[1]<ref name="Empire">Template:Cite web</ref>


The town is mostly residential commuter town with a strong history of self-employed trades as it has traditionally centred its commerce on its foreshortened boundary, the Upper Richmond Road, arguably half part of East Sheen. Some businesses on the north side of the Upper Richmond Road make reference to the old ecclesiastical and ward boundaries supported by their still Mortlake side streets. East Sheen was once a manor in the parish of Mortlake and since early times an economic forum, and now a dining and convenience hub of the two districts. The Victoria County History written 1910 to 1912 says on this topic refuses to list East Sheen as a parish, describes its detailed history under Mortlake and states the parish was "now connected with Barnes on one side and with New Richmond on the other".<ref name=mills>Mills, A., Oxford Dictionary of London Place Names (2001)</ref><ref name=m>Template:Cite web </ref> With the advent of motor transport Mortlake's winding high street also known as the Lower Mortlake Road has been of brewery and residential use.

Stag Brewery or Mortlake Brewery

thumb thumb, built in 1720 and, from 1895 until 1940, the seat of local government for the Municipal Borough of Barnes (which was abolished in 1965)]]

In the 1840s Charles James Philips and James Wigan acquired Mortlake Brewery, which had existed since the fifteenth century.<ref name="history">Richmond L. and Turton A. (eds.),The Brewing Industry: A Guide to Historical Records, 1990, p.263</ref>

In 1889 the brewery was acquired by James Watney & Co., which in 1898 became Watney Combe & Reid after acquiring Messrs. Combe Delafield and Co. and Messrs. Reid and Co. When Watney's Stag Brewery in Victoria, London, was demolished in 1959, the name became officially applied to Mortlake Brewery. Being the last phase of The Boat Race which refers to all the traditional local names, it is still widely referred to as the Mortlake Brewery.<ref name="history"/>

The brewery became part of Scottish Courage, and is now leased to Anheuser-Busch Europe Ltd and produces Budweiser pale lager. On 6 January 2009, InBev Anheuser-Busch said that the company was proposing to close the Stag Brewery in 2010 as a result of a merger between InBev and Anheuser-Busch, although this has since been postponed until at least 2014.<ref name="Brewery staying open">Template:Cite news</ref> The closure could lead to the loss of 180 full-time equivalent (FTE) jobs at the brewery.

Classic Chrome Ltd

Mortlake is also the home of Classic Chrome Ltd – a specialist Classic & Sportscar dealer who are situated adjacent to Mortlake Railway Station and have been established since 1989. Their showrooms, which also contain Queen Victoria's old waiting room which she used when coming to visit her family in Richmond Park is a real landmark of Mortlake.


Mortlake affords an undistracted view of the river as its riverside promenade is set by its buildings including the brewery, unlike the embankment style roads along other London banks such as in Barnes until Barnes Bridge.

The two large pubs at either end of the 'riverside prom' are not listed buildings:

  • The White Hart
  • The Ship



Places of worship

  • St Mary Magdalen’s Roman Catholic Church Mortlake
  • St Mary the Virgin Mortlake (Anglican)


Adjoining districts

  • Barnes
  • Chiswick (Grove Park after which is Old Chiswick or Strand-on-the-Green, depending on direction)
  • East Sheen
  • Kew

Nearest railway stations

  • Mortlake railway station
  • North Sheen railway station

These are minor stops on the Waterloo to Reading Line which has three branch lines, to Windsor, to Weybridge and back to the London terminus via Kingston upon Thames.

This railway is a narrow bisector of the settlement, being generally on the flat with its streets, which tend to run perpendicular to it.

Demography and housing

To give an equal councillor number and electorate, the ward here takes back from the Middle Ages eastern parts since before the Tudor period considered part of Barnes.

2011 Census homes
Ward Detached Semi-detached Terraced Flats and apartments Caravans/temporary/mobile homes/houseboats Shared between households<ref name=ons/>
Mortlake and Barnes Common 167 547 1,765 2,453 1 8
2011 Census households
Ward Population Households % Owned outright % Owned with a loan hectares<ref name=ons/>
Mortlake and Barnes Common 10,919 4,771 27 32 185



External links

Template:LB Richmond Template:Areas of London