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1 October 2015
‘The disused Sheerness (Kent) Boat Store was built in 1860 and is the world’s earliest surviving example of a multi-storey iron-frame and panel structure following the destruction of the Crystal Palace and the first South Kensington Museum. The all-metal frame, made rigid by portal bracing, was pioneering. It was subsequently adopted by early skyscrapers in Chicago, and universally used for modern steel-framed buildings. Without the techniques demonstrated at Sheerness boat store, today’s architectural world might be very different. But the boat store is in desperate need of a use. The Isle of Sheppey is one of the South East’s more remote areas but the not too distant Chatham Dockyard shows that historic buildings such as the boat store can have a future’ (Victorian Society).
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