The westernmost and one of the largest of London’s Thames islets, now also called Port Hampton business island by its
private owners. The words ‘eyot’ and ‘ait’ are used interchangeably to denote the small islands of
the Thames and the two are pronounced identically. Platt’s Eyot is linked by a narrow bridge to the Lower Sunbury Road.
Until the 1880s osiers were grown here, a species of willow used for basket-making. The islet owes its hilly topography to
the dumping of soil excavated during the creation of additional filter beds at Hampton waterworks at the end of the nineteenth
century. Platt’s Eyot was home to the Thorneycroft boatyard, which built torpedo boats in two world wars. In 1994 The
Independent described the old yard as “now sufficiently mellow in appearance to be considered part of the picturesque
confusion rather than an industrial eyesore.” The islet was also formerly a base for the river police. Although its
features are on a small scale, Platt’s Eyot has an unexpected amount of both woodland and light industry, together with
amenities like a café and public conveniences provided for workers and sailors. Many of the islet’s workshops and studio
units presently lie empty, but its moorings are almost fully occupied.