The Royal Arsenal Canal – The waterway serving the Woolwich military complex

The Royal Arsenal (or Woolwich Arsenal) canal was designed by Lietunant Colonel Pilkington and built between 1812-14, and extended again by 1816. It had a dual purpose – one was to deliver materials into the heart of the Royal Arsenal military complex and the other was to create a defence boundary to the east. It does not seem that it […]

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The Romford Canal 6

Romford Canal – The final section The canal route passes through what is now known as The Chase nature reserve (Barking & Dagenham confusingly calls it Eastbrook End Park) After initially following the Beam River for a short distance above the railway at Elm Park, the canal changes route and follows the River Rom. The final three, or possibly even […]

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The Romford Canal 5

The canal route to the C2C/District railway crossing at Elm Park By these houses on Roosevelt Way, there is evidently a rise in the ground. It is totally plausible that a lock would have been built at this location. Traces of the canal are hard to find. It seems that between Rainham Road and Elm Park sections of the canal […]

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The Romford Canal 4

Romford Canal – From Rainham Road to Elm Park The canal heads slightly northeastwards towards Elm Park along a much narrower Beam Valley The crossing at Rainham Road (or is it Dagenham Road? There’s often been some confusion over which name it should be since the stretch of road was converted into a dual carriageway.) The view looks slightly northeast […]

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The Romford Canal 3

‘The lock’ to Rainham Road A depression is obious here, although there doesnt seem to be any trace of the lock chamber walls now, perhaps the stones were taken away and used elsewhere. Who knows, but this old tree stump that rises vertically appears to indicate perhaps a hard standing that formed the earthworks constituting the sides of the chamber. […]

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The Romford Canal 2

New Road to Beam Bridge lock Dagenham New Road bridge (the Beam Bridge) over the Beam River, once a busy main road but nowadays most traffic goes via the new A13 Choats Manor Way futher south. Excavations in 1972 adjacent to this site revealed remains of the Romford Canal although what sort of ‘remains’ it is not known The plot […]

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The Romford Canal

A waterway that took 65 years to plan & construct – and unfinished! The first plans for a canal to Romford were seen in 1809 and 1812 when Ralph Walker introduced proposals using a route from Rainham Creek with a length of 4 three quarters mile and six locks. An examination of the proposals in 1818 commented that the scheme […]

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Along The Roding (Ilford) Navigation

This navigation is still in use – sort of. From its confluence at the Thames it is known as Barking Creek, a winding, tidal waterway. Once it reaches Barking it is generally known as the River Roding. Today it is useable as far as Barking High Bridge Road, or somewhat further north with great care on higher tides. Water levels […]

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The Roding (Barking and Ilford) Navigation

From its confluence at the Thames it is usually known as Barking Creek, a winding, tidal waterway. Once it reaches Barking it becomes the River Roding proper. This is one of west Essex’s more noted rivers and rises near Dunmow, before passing through the Roding villages, then Ongar, Abridge and Redbridge. For around a century the river was easily navigable […]

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Regent’s Canal – Mare Street to Limehouse

Gasometers near Mare Street, Hackney Busy summer scene by Northiam Street Boats and cyclists by Bonner Hall bridge in Victoria Park Old Ford Lock – 10pm at night! The Bow Heritage Trail includes this section of the Regents Canal as well as the adjacent Hertford Union Canal, which branches off below Old Ford Lock. Mile End, Johnsons, Salmon and Limehouse […]

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