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Glover's Island

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Glover's Island

Glover's Island from Richmond Hill, Richmond
Glover's Island from upstream with Richmond Hill beyond

Originally called Petersham Ait, Glover's Island is situated in Horse Reach on the River Thames, between Richmond Lock and Teddington Lock in the Borough of Richmond upon Thames, London, England.

In the 1872 the island was bought by a Richmond waterman named Joseph Glover for £70. He put the island up for sale in 1895 but Sir J. Whittaker Ellis (Charter Mayor of Richmond) declined to buy it for £5,000 and suggested that the Richmond Corporation should be approached.

The Amenities Committee considered the proposal on 2 April 1895 and decided –

"That while the Committee think it desirable that the Island should be acquired for the Corporation if it could be obtained at a reasonable price, they are of the opinion that in view of the sum now named, it would be useless to enter into any negotiation for its purchase."

Trying again in 1898, Glover caused a scandal by putting the island up for auction and suggesting it could be sold to Pears soap to erect a giant advertising hoarding.

Glover used this to blackmail the Richmond Corporation, offering it to them for £4,000 but although the Corporation wanted to buy the island, it was felt that there was no justification in spending such a large sum of money out of its funds.

There then followed a lengthy debate and correspondence in the local press about preserving the view from Richmond Hill and suggestions were made that the purchase should be funded jointly by public subscription and the corporation.

By September, only £50 had been given to the public fund and the disclosure that Glover had purchased the island in 1872 for £70 did not help the collection.

The auction took place on 21 September but the highest bid was only £200. An unnamed resident had offered Glover £1,000 for the island (which he then intended to present to the Corporation), but Glover refused to sell and also withdrew the island from sale.

In 1900 Max Waechter, who lived in Terrace House, Richmond Hill, bought Glover’s Island and gave it to the Council – the sale price was never disclosed.

See also

References

  • "Richmond Libraries’ Local Studies Collection"
Next island upstream River Thames Next island downstream
Eel Pie Island Glover's Island Corporation Island

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