Port Victoria



The Railway magazine: Volume 108, 1962: “The new terminus was named Port Victoria, in honour of the reigning Sovereign, and a connection with Sheerness (Town Pier) was provided by a ferry, for which two paddle steamers, the Myleta and the Edward William, were purchased. The distance from London to Sheerness by the new route was about 42 miles, compared with 52 miles by the branch of the London, Chatham & Dover Railway from Sittingbourne. The choice of the name Port Victoria for a ferry-railhead on the estuary of the Medway indicated a far deeper significance for the new line than competition for Sheerness traffic. Sir Edward Watkin, the Chairman of the South Eastern, was envisaging the development of the site as a port for large sea-going ships. Such a port would have been within easy reach of London, but would have saved shipping the long and frequently slow passage up the Thames. Moreover, as a port for continental traffic, it would have been outside the agreement,  signed many years earlier, between the South Eastern and the London, Chatham & Dover Railways. A pier for continental traffic already had been built by the LCDR at Queenborough, on the other side of the Medway. Efforts to develop Port Victoria as a port for continental traffic, or for oceangoing ships, failed, and the amount of traffic by the ferry to and from Sheerness was never heavy. In September, 1895, the boats were withdrawn for the winter months, and thereafter operated during the summer only. For the time being, the winter train services terminated at Sharnal Street, but subsequently some trains ran through to Port Victoria, mainly for the convenience of members of the Royal Corinthian Yacht Club, whose premises adjoined that station.”

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