Skip to main content

The charity making life better by water

Porters Row Cottages and Garden

Slightly separate from the rest of the docks, 12 cottages were originally built for the dockworkers in 1833 and were home to shipwrights, blacksmiths, railway workers, porters and their families.

Outside the Porters Row cottages at the National Waterways Museum

Only four cottages remain today, numbers 9 to 12. Inside, they have been furnished to reflect different time periods: 1830, 1900, 1936 and 1952.

Come and see the different styles of the living rooms and kitchens, which reflect social history over that period.

The garage

The garage at the rear of the cottages was used to house the horse-drawn manual fire engine, fire-fighting equipment and uniforms of the Shropshire Union Fire Brigade and was last used in any fire-fighting function in 1970, when Telfords Warehouse was destroyed by fire.

Porters Row Garden

Behind Porters Row cottages, lies the garden which can be accessed through number 10 or through the gate at the side of the cottages.

Our plans are to transform the garden into a few themed areas to reflect different aspects of a late 1900 garden. Come and visit us to see how we are getting on.

Inside cottage, Porters Row, Ellesmere Port

Our plans for the garden include:

  • encouraging bees and insects to visit to show how they are needed for pollination, so there will be a section planted with honeysuckle, buddleias and foxgloves
  • showing the types of produce grown in the late 1900s, there will be currants, gooseberries, and rhubarb plants. In addition, small patches of vegetables like onions, beetroot, and greens will be grown
  • there will be a herb garden so that you can see the plants used for flavouring food, giving fragrance to the workers houses, plus a variety of other uses
  • there will be a ‘cottage' garden area with old shrub roses like Rosa Mundi and colourful perennials. We will have a bed of hydrangeas and fuchsias, which will add colour and be insect friendly

Last Edited: 14 August 2023

photo of a location on the canals
newsletter logo

Stay connected

Sign up to our monthly newsletter and be the first to hear about campaigns, upcoming events and fundraising inspiration