Search

Turning wharves into homes kills Thames as working river, warns London Assembly

19:25 18 April 2013

Bow Creek... wharves unsuitable for larg barges

Bow Creek... wharves unsuitable for larg barges

Peter Marshall

Historic riverside wharves in east London are in danger of losing their protection as commercial trading centres.

Plans to turn many wharves into luxury homes could damage the Thames as a working river and seriously effect economic growth, the London Assembly warns.

It follows proposals by the Mayor to allow nine wharves, from Canning Town to Rainham, to be removed from a list of 50 protected waterfront sites.

Two wharves at Canning Town on the Bow Creek are described on the list as “less favourable” for the river trade.

Priory Wharf is said to be disadvantaged by its location on the winding Lea estuary, while the nearby Mayer Parry Wharf is hindered by barge sizes needed for heavy bulk cargo.

Silvertown’s Sunshine Wharf also has “navigation restrictions” to keep cargo-handling operations on a large scale.

The London Assembly’s planning chief has now written to the Secretary of State urging him to scrap plans to let wharves be turned to residential use without planning permission.

“It could jeopardise London’s future economic growth,” said planning chair Nicky Gavron.

“The low land value of wharves puts them under pressure to be redeveloped as riverside flats.

“But if they’re snapped up by developers, it rules out the future option of transporting waste by river and would reduce the potential to tap into the emerging green economy.”

The Assembly warns this would lead to a future shortage of cheap commercial premises.

“London may have spare office space,” Gavron added. “But turning business premises into homes is not the answer.

“Once the wharves are gone, they’re gone forever—the Thames will slowly cease being a working river.”

Other east London wharves under threat are the Welbeck in Barking, due to inland navigation restrictions at Barking Creek, and DePass Wharf at Dagenham with the poor condition of its jetty and potential impact of the proposed DLR extension to Dagenham Dock. Another three at Bexley are also at risk.

0 comments

Latest News Stories

08:30
Section Boys, Big Tipper, Big Narstie, Lady Leshurr, Trapstar, and street team members

Young people will take over Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park for a weekend in November at the first ever youth-led cultural festival.

Elizabeth Olympic Park
Yesterday, 14:03
Peter Spence and Steve Heap install the crossbar for the rugby posts at the former Olympic Stadium in preparation for the friendly between the Barbarians and Samoa (pic: Andrew Baker)

History will be made this afternoon when the Barbarians face Samoa in the first ever rugby match at the Olympic Stadium.

Australia
Yesterday, 12:00
Freddy Mayhew, left, Iain Burns, centre and Keith Abraham, right.

Keith Abraham could probably make a fortune by recording himself chatting idly about the weather, such is the potency of his profoundly peaceful voice.

Canning Town
Fri, 18:47
Lucy Watson and James Dunmore attending the launch of Boulers: rooftop Pétanque by Orangina, at Roof East in Stratford. Picture:Matt Crossick/PA Wire

Famous faces improbably took to a Stratford rooftop for a round of French-style Boules this week.

London

Most read news

Competitions

Shop till you drop!

Home to top name brands at great prices, TK Maxx is more like a treasure hunt than a shop. Perfect for grabbing a bargain or some hidden gems, you arm yourself with a trolley and go wild.

Read more
Scones, jam and a cup of Earl Grey anyone?

Luxury boutique hotel Flemings Mayfair has recently launched The Drawing Room, London’s most stylish location for afternoon tea.

Read more

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Newham Recorder e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24


Our trusted business finder