When the Thames Tunnel opened in 1843, Sir Marc Brunel’s Rotherhithe shaft was transformed into the Rotherhithe Grand Entrance Hall. Millions of visitors descended the grand staircases to visit one of the great wonders of the Victorian age.
The Grand Entrance Hall was closed to the public for 150 years, but can be visited today on one of the regular tours organised by the Brunel Museum.
Visitor access to the shaft is currently via a very low doorway reached by stepping over a flood defense wall. Once through the doorway, visitors must use a temporary scaffold walkway to reach the bottom. We plan to improve access to the shaft.
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Brunel Lecture Tour
Museum Director Robert Hulse is in America giving a Brunel Lecture Tour organised by the English Speaking Union. Click here for the full itinerary.
How grateful should today's travellers be to Isambard Kingdom Brunel? Well, during a career cut short by his death, aged 53, in 1859, this engineering genius became the father of urban mass transit systems, inter-city rail transport and intercontinental passenger shipping. He even found time to design the odd boutique hotel ... so, quite a lot. "