Lot's Ait, covering 1.724 acres (0.7 ha), has a very narrow divide from larger, downstream Brentford Ait. It was for centuries used for growing of grass and osiers: basket willows, used for basketry, furniture, and cart-making, as well as cattle fodder. It was once known as Barbel Island being a fruitful area for fishing. It contained a yard where barges were repaired until 1980, when it was sold. It acquired a wild character with naturalised willows, rotting boats and rusting dock roofs and became a haven for wildlife. In 2002 the island was offered for sale with outline planning permission for a restaurant, a leisure facility and boat storage. It is accessible by footbridge, at low tide in sturdy boots across the thick, shifting mud bed of the channel against the Brentford shore, and by water from the slipway Goats Wharf off Brentford High Street.
In 2011, a lease on the island was granted to a local company, John's Boat Works, who has commenced boat building works on the island for the first time in over 30 years and put it back into use. In January 2012 a new footbridge was installed to link the island to the Brentford bank of the Thames at Smith Hill. The bridge was designed by Beckett Rankine and built and installed by MSO Marine.
In popular culture
- Film scenes in
- Lots Ait boatworks featured in an episode of George Clarke's Amazing Spaces.
- OS 25-inch map of 1910 Ordnance Survey London sheet LXXXIV revised 1891-94, published 1897.
- "News". Brentford Dock. Neil O'Dwyer. August 2002. Retrieved 2009-01-05.
- Ordnance Survey map, courtesy of English Heritage Archived 2012-04-24 at the Wayback Machine.
- "Blog". John's Boat Works. John. September 2011. Retrieved 2012-01-10.
- "Planning". Agenda Item. London Borough of Hounslow. September 2011. Retrieved 2012-01-10.
- Hatts, Leigh (2005). The Thames Path: From the Sea to the Source (2nd ed.). Milnthorpe: Cicerone. ISBN 978-1-85284-436-3. OCLC 276222230.
- "Syon and Mortlake Reaches: PLA 307 & 308 Main Surveys (Extract)" (PDF). Port of London. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-07-20. Retrieved 2009-01-05.
- Bolton, Diane K; Croot, Patricia E C; Hicks, M A (1982). "Chiswick: Introduction". In Baker, T F T; Elrington, C R. A History of the County of Middlesex: Volume 7: Acton, Chiswick, Ealing and Brentford, West Twyford, Willesden. Oxford: Oxford University Press for the University of London, Institute of Historical Research. pp. 50–51. OCLC 59178433. Retrieved 2009-01-05.
|Next island upstream||River Thames||Next island downstream|
|Isleworth Ait||Lot's Ait||Brentford Ait|
- Lot's Ait.com official site
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Lots Ait.|