King Edward VII Nautical College
The King Edward VII Nautical School was founded in 1902 by the British Sailors' Society and was a shore based establishment from the start. It was set up to train Merchant Navy officers and was based in the British Sailors' Society's Residential Hostel for Marine Officers on London's West India Docks. It had a separate halls of residence for the students on Cromwell Road at its junction with Gloucester Road. The students were bused from one to the other every day. Unlike other training establishments, such as HMS Worcester, this was for men who had already been at sea for a while and were training for their Mates or Masters exams rather than boys destined to become sea going cadets. In 1904 it took over the pre-sea training course first set up by the Poplar School of Engineering and Navigation. In 1926 the school became a recognised school of technical instruction aided by the London County Council (LCC).
In 1949 the Department of Navigation’s more junior courses were transferred from the Sir john Cass NAUTICAL to the King Edward VII Nautical College under the London County Council development plan. The Navigation Department of Poplar Technical College was closed, and its courses for First Mates, Masters and Extra Masters were transferred to the Sir john Cass Technical Institute. Due to this merger from 1952 it started to conduct courses, very successfully, for the training of radio officers for the Merchant Navy and the linking of these courses with those offered for deck officer cadets provides a unique opportunity for the two disciplines to work side by side.
In 1968 the Merchant Navy College was formed from the amalgamation of the Incorporated Thames Nautical Training College, HMS Worcester and part of the King Edward VII Nautical College. In 1969 The Department of Navigation at Sir John Cass Nautical was also merged with the King Edward VII Nautical College and the whole lot moved to a new building at Tower Hill, London.
Purpose built accommodation within the Ingress Abbey Estate was provided by the Inner London Education Authority in 1975, and HMS Worcester was sold to be broken up in 1978.
At its height, the College ran courses for Deck, Engineering and Radio Officers, but a dispute over funding brought about its closure in 1989.