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For the football team, see Millwall F.C..

Millwall is an area in Londonmarker, on the western side of the Isle of Dogsmarker, in the London Borough of Tower Hamletsmarker. It lies to the south of the developments at West India Docksmarker, including Canary Wharfmarker.


Originally known as Marshwall, its name derives from the large number of windmills built on the river wall, in the 19th century. Corn was brought along the River Thames to be ground into flour here, before being delivered to bakers who kneaded the dough.

On January 31, 1858, the largest ship of that time, the SS Great Eastern designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel, was launched from the yard of Messrs J Scott Russell & Co, of Millwall. The 211 metre (692 ft) length was too wide for the river, and the ship had to be launched sideways. Port Cities London - "Building the Great Eastern"] accessed 17 Apr 2007The launch site is preserved at the modern Napier Avenue, itself named after David Napier, the previous occupier of the yard. Due to the technical difficulties of the launch, this was the last ship of such a size to be built on the Island, though other builders such as Yarrows and Samuda Brothers continued building warships on the island for another 50 years.

In the 1860s the large Millwall Dockmarker was built, extending from the Thames at Millwall into the centre of the Isle of Dogs. The spoil from the dock was left as the Mudchutemarker.

During the 19th century, the area now called Island Gardensmarker was referred to as North Greenwichmarker, for the North Greenwich railway stationmarker, that was opened in 1872 to connect with the ferry that was the forerunner of the Greenwich foot tunnelmarker. The Greenwich peninsulamarker, previously East london, is now also known by this epithet for the North Greenwich tube stationmarker.

2004 A view of Millwall Docks
Like other parts of the Isle of Dogsmarker, substantial redevelopment has been more or less ongoing since the 1980s, resulting in modern industrial and commercial buildings and hastily constructed contemporary housing beginning to dominate the remaining early 20th century "two up, two down" homes that once housed the dock workers and supporting communities of this area.


Millwall is arguably most famous for its football club, Millwall F.C., founded in 1885 as "Millwall Rovers" and nicknamed "The Dockers", (changed to "The Lions" in 1900) which moved south of the river to New Crossmarker in 1910, after occupying no fewer than four separate grounds in the 25 years since its formation as a football club. They now play in Bermondseymarker.

Millwall Rugby Clubmarker was formed in 1995. From humble beginnings the club has gone from strength to strength. There is a very successful first team (having gained 4 promotions in 6 seasons) and a second team (known as the Llamas) and a third team, all of which meet regularly during the season. The first team enjoys a good status in the Essex Division 1 league and the Llamas are in the Essex Merit Table (Division 2), while the Thirds are playing in the Merit Table (Division 5) having won Division 6 last season. They now also have women's rugby - the Millwall Venus girls - and a thriving Youth section catering for boys and girls from 8 years old.


Millwall gained some notoriety when, in a council by-election in 1993, Derek Beackon won the British National Party's first council seat there. After a major anti-fascist campaign, the BNP lost the seat at the following full council election.

In September 2004, Tower Hamlets Respect fought its second council election in the borough - standing local activist Paul McGarr. In this previously solid Labour seat, Labour were pushed into third place, and the local Conservative party took its first ever seat on Tower Hamlets council. The Conservative vote had benefited from both the resentment of the original inhabitants over perceived neglect for the area by the local Labour Council and the large number of new riverside apartments aimed at more wealthy homeowners. In the 2006 local elections, the Conservatives took all three seats, defeating former MP Alan Amos.


For details of education in Millwall see the List of schools in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets


Nearest places

The nearest Docklands Light Railway stations are South Quaymarker, Crossharbourmarker, Mudchutemarker and Island Gardensmarker

See also


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