Thames Path latest: One bit regained, another bit lost

Good news! You probably know this by now anyway, but the Thames Path reopened through the site of the old Tunnel Refineries plant before Christmas. Unfortunately, I’ve not been down to check it out myself, but I’m planning to have a wander down with my camera some day soon.

But what the gods of development give, the gods of development can take away…

Now, to be fair, we’ve been warned about this already, but it’s a reminder just who holds the power on the peninsula – the developers. With more development to come between here and the Dome over the coming years, it’s not just the west side of the peninsula, still suffering the loss of the walkway at Lovells Wharf thanks to London and Regional Properties, that will be affected.

Still, the “advanced warning” sign a whole five feet from the closure fence is a nice touch, and the boards which had been up explaining what was happening have been taken down. Whoops. After all, it’s not as if Bellway Homes is incapable of putting a big, bold message up if it really wants to…

At least we know that closure will last until April. But what about EDF Energy’s enormous trench further east, just as the path enters Charlton?

Here, a big wide path has been reduced to the narrowest gap possible. A baby buggy might just squeak that, a wheelchair almost certainly won’t. It was bad enough trying to wobble past it on a bike. According to the little-known London Register of Roadworks, it’s with us for another week yet:

No matter how much we all love the Thames Path, our sense of enjoyment certainly isn’t shared by the developers and utilities who are only too happy to dig it up and block it.


  1. It’s not just the peninsula. Thames Water are actively plotting to do something similar on the other side of the river. One of their preferred sites for the new Thames Sewer would sever the path between Limehouse and Wapping for anything between three and seven years… Details at

  2. The Thames Sewer will (pretty inevitably) be causing rather a lot of disruption. The Kings Stairs Gardens between Bermondsey and Rotherhithe are due to disappear for seven years with part permanent loss to ancillary buildings. I’m not sure what is the relevant legislation, but apparently TW have the power to bypass Southwark Council planners and forge ahead despite opposition. I haven’t yet looked in to this, but there is a protest group:

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