Subject: Urgent: Bow Wharf

Date: 18 June 2013

Richard Parry
Chief Executive, Canal and River Trust
Station House
500 Elder Gate
Milton Keynes MK9 1BB

18 June 2013

Dear Mr Parry,

Bow Wharf, Regent's Canal

You may be aware of the widespread concern about a planning application to develop Bow Wharf, submitted in 2011 by British Waterways and re-submitted in 2013 by the Canal and River Trust.

On Wednesday night (19 June) this application goes before the Tower Hamlets planning committee.

The three proposed residential buildings due to their height, bulk, style and position will change forever the special historic character and unique open setting of this junction. They will dominate the waterway and towpaths (please refer to the photographs attached). The site is in a conservation area containing three unique heritage assets: the listed Stop Lock Bridge, locally listed warehouse and locally listed former paint factory. The Stop Lock Bridge itself is threatened by likely use by works traffic in spite of its 3 tonne weight limit.

As well as the local residents who use and appreciate Bow Wharf and the basin, all those who walk along the canal here will have a diminished experience. Instead, the site should exemplify the idea of "London's greatest park" and anticipate increased public interest when the Hertford Union Canal becomes an important route to the revived Olympic site.

Growing numbers of people are very alarmed that the custodians of the waterways are behind this ugly scheme, though we do not dispute the need to raise funds. We feel that the Trust should urgently review how it generates income where this is at the expense of the canal environment and the potential loss of public support for the Trust.

We strongly urge you to take steps to withdraw the application and revise the development at an appropriate density, scale and style, respecting the historic waterway location and natural environment of Bow Wharf. That move would be widely supported, generating much goodwill towards the Trust for the future.

Yours sincerely,

Lucy Rogers, Tower Hamlets resident
for and on behalf of the East End Waterway Group

Simon Salem, Canal and River Trust
Paul Dimoldenberg, Quatro
Sir Brian Fender, London Waterways Partnership
Richard Rutter, Enterprise Manager, Canal and River Trust
James Lazarus, Property Development, Canal and River Trust
Jon Guest, Canal and River Trust
Fran Read, Press officer, Canal and River Trust
Sorwar Ahmed, Canal and River Trust
Nigel Crowe, Heritage, Canal and River Trust
Florence Salberter, Heritage, Canal and River Trust
Andrew Denny, Waterways World
Jennie Jones, Assembly Member, GLA
Nicky Gavron, Assembly Member, GLA
Natalie Bennett, The Green Party
Jim Fitzpatrick MP

East End Waterway Group
Local residents, schools, community groups, amenity societies and businesses working with British Waterways*, Tower Hamlets Council and others for the protection and beneficial use of the six mile waterway 'ring', its historic buildings, structures and habitats.

*Now Canal and River Trust
Address: 7, Shepton Houses, Welwyn Street, London E2 OJN Contact Tel: 07903 975 473

Bow Wharf images.pdf

Return to main page