LGOC shoeing forge, May 1911. Blacksmith works on anvil on left while three other men fit shoes to horses on right.
Photographed by Topical Press, May 1911
Image no: 033546
Inventory no: 1998/86721
20th Century London caption: This image is a London General Omnibus Company (L.G.O.C.) shoeing forge. A blacksmith works on an anvil on the left while three other men fit shoes to horses on right. Horseshoes hang on the wall behind. Horseshoes would have cost the company over £20,000 per year. This forge closed only five months later in 1911 when the L.G.O.C. replaced its horse buses with motorised ones. Horses were a huge capital expense, and costly to maintain. Not only did they have to be fed and watered seven days a week, but they had to be regularly reshod and taken to the infirmary when they were sick. Their harness also had to be renewed. Thus every stable had a blacksmith, an infirmary and a harness shop onsite.