BBC News: the race to open London’s 2nd river!

Nobody has heard of Cody Dock.

Sealed off from the public for decades and absent from Google Maps, the dock lies hidden between Canary Wharf and the Olympic Park, on the indusrial Lower Lea River. Built in the 1870s, it has slipped through the cracks of East London’s creative regeneration.

But now a dynamic local charity has ambitious plans to reverse its fortunes, in a campaign backed by actor David Suchet (Hercule Poirot) and singer Billy Bragg, whose family worked on the dock before it closed in the 60’s.

The inspiring project will see the dock opened to the public, a stroke removing the final obstacle in an amazing 26-mile walk, meandering from Hertfordshire to the Thames, along the banks of London’s second river.

The new public space will feature tranquil gardens and wildlife habitats, surrounded by a metallic jungle of gasholders, pipework, and distant skyscrapers. A new swing bridge will allow walkers and cyclists to cross the dock.

It’s the first phase of a vision to create a vibrant new creative quarter at Cody Dock, part-designed by the funders of this project.

Workshops, studios, a museum, and a guesthouse will all be built, set around a new marina for canal boats. And 50 jobs will be created.

“One of London’s most historic docks sits behind lock and key in a neglected corner of the capital,” says Suchet.

“Opening Cody Dock will complete an epic 26-mile walk along the Lea. London has a wonderful network of waterways that allow people to explore and relax amid the metropolitan bustle.

“Cody Dock is the missing piece in the jigsaw. I hope people will dig deep so we can unlock it for all to enjoy.”

The plan is to open the dock by the Olympics. But they need your support.

By backing this people-powered project you can kick-start a bright future for a neglected corner of the capital. Let’s make it happen!

To pledge a contribution visit: spacehive.com/codydock

By |2012-05-15T17:03:20+00:00May 15th, 2012|News|

About the Author:

Chris is the Founder and CEO of Spacehive, the world’s first crowdfunding platform for civic projects. He is a former Sunday Times staff journalist who covered architecture and planning, as well as leading the paper’s London coverage. He launched Spacehive in 2012 as a social business to stimulate new sources funding and creativity for the civic environment. Since then the platform has helped to deliver a diverse mix of projects across the UK - from a new community centre in Wales to a giant waterslide in the middle of a Bristol high street. He has won awards for Spacehive from the Big Venture Challenge, Nesta, UnLtd, Deloitte and Downing Street.