Model of Samuel Williams and Sons hydrofoil

Object number

LDVAL 2013.2.1


after 1960 – before 1975


Model of Samuel Williams and Sons hydrofoil. Made by Albert Denegri who was employed by the company as a general woodworker from 1940 to 1975. Mr Denegri was a trained cabinet maker and joiner, but carried out a number of tasks for the company, from making boardroom furniture to barge repairs and repairing crane walkways. Albert Denegri was asked to make a model of Samuel Williams and Sons' hydrofoil, their passenger vessel used for corporate travel. The model was shown at corporate presentations. Albert Denegri lived with his wife, son and daughter in Chequers Lane, Dagenham, and later moved to Ripple Villas in Dagenham.

Samuel Williams & Sons
In 1887, Samuel Williams, a former lighterman, bought 30 acres of land in south Dagenham and built a timber dock on the River Thames with a railway line connecting to the London Tilbury & Southend Railway main line. By 1891 he had built two new jetties and later added a barge slipway. The Dagenham Dock was used mainly for coal deliveries coming down the coast from North England. Williams spent years slowly filling in Dagenham Level - the marshland and lake behind his river dock - with spoil obtained from London. Concrete piles were used for the difficult task of piling the Dagenham jetties where the banks of the Thames were marshy. The technique also allowed the reclaimed land to be developed into an industrial estate with the company leasing factory buildings to tenants. From 1929, the Ford factory was built on concrete piles on part of this estate. Samuel Williams and Sons was a self-sufficient business, with its own civil and mechanical engineering departments, which liked to be at the forefront of events – for example, it ran the first hydrofoil on the Thames in the 1960s.

Physical description

Large scale model of a hydrofoil. Wood, with metal and perspex fittings and decorations. Painted in white, dark blue, pale blue and red. with a fitted stand.




Maritime transport material


Boat length: 980mm
width: 435mm
height: 375mm
Stand length: 685mm
width: 410mm
height: 215mm


Body: Wood
Fittings: Metal
Windows: Plastic

Collection type

Social history, Industry

Looking for records

Objects that are not on display in the museum can be viewed by appointment at the discretion of the Museum Curator. To find out more about accessing the collection please email: or telephone: 020 8227 2034

Write something

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Start dateafter 1960
End datebefore 1975
InstitutionValence House Museum
TypeMaritime transport material
Collection type
Social history