Two historic vessels are to leave their berths at West India Dock and take up residence at Trinity Buoy Wharf .
The vessels, Knocker White and Varlet, have been transferred by the Museum of London Docklands to TBM’s owners Urban Space Management which intends to preserve them and put them on show.
The museum has been selling off its floating vessel collect and the two working boats, acquired in the 1980s, are the last to be re-housed.
Both vessels will be moved overnight on Tuesday (November 14) in a complex operation with each move potentially taking up to seven hours depending on the tides.
Sharon Ament, Director of the Museum of London said: “The team at Trinity Buoy Wharf are well placed to care for and make the most of Varlet and Knocker White. I am looking forward to seeing them in their new environment contributing to the story of London’s Port in a more powerful way.”
Eric Reynolds, founding director of Urban Space Management , said “At Trinity Buoy Wharf we have Faradays experimental lighthouse, a fine lightship, and an example of the type of Thames lighter that would have been rowed on the tide as far up river as Brentford.
“The river Thames was the commercial mainspring of London until the docks closed in the early 1970s and we are proud to be able to be able to show some of the traditional craft that kept goods moving on this great river”.
Knocker White was built for Harrisions (London) Lighterage Ltd in 1924 by T Van Duijvendijk at Scheepswerk Lekkerkek, Netherlands. She was launched on May 23, 1924, and named Carnrock. In 1962 she was sold to W E White and Sons and was renamed Knocker White.
Varlet is a Jubilee Class Tug built in 1937 by James Pollock and Co Ltd, Faversham for the London Lighterage Company Vokins and Co. She worked in the West India and Royal Docks and on the River Lea. She remained in service until the early 1980s.