Greenwich riverside path trees to be removed?

Plans are in to possibly remove willow trees on the riverside path in Greenwich at Tunnel Wharf

The removal of willow trees on the western edge of the Peninsula will greatly impact upon one of my favourite spots not only in Greenwich but across all of London.

The path is narrow on the approach to the site

The reason they will likely be chopped down is ultimately a positive, as it will enable river based cargo to serve an adjacent site rather than lorries, though the impact will be greatly felt.

Sivyer are looking install overhead conveyors to transport waste from boats to the Tunnel Wharf site.

If you’ve never walked around the riverside walk past Enderby Wharf I’d certainly recommend it. One of the best spots is where sand a little beach suddenly appears, and views over the river to Canary Wharf present themselves framed by the willow trees.

Trees alongside pier. Conveyer belt will be located in front of jetty here.

It really is not like anywhere else locally in terms of feel on a sunny day. If you’ve never been go and see – and today looks a decent day for it. These trees are an integral part of what makes this spot so special.

Conveyor Belt will be located directly next to jetty

Honestly, when the sun’s out and tide at the right level it transports you somewhere else. It’s London, but not the London most will know. Well, the tyres and odd piece of rubbish are a hint but easy enough to forgive that.

It’s therefore a bit of a kicker to see them described thus: “noting they are considered to undesirable or unsuitable to retain and protect”.

Undesirable? Pull the other one. Sure, it may be for the greater good but these aren’t undesirable. It’d be great to see other trees planted nearby in a similar style but they won’t frame the sandy shoreline as these willows do.

Jetty to see fence and gates installed if plans approved

The installation of fences onto the publicly accessible jetty suggests access will be restricted or blocked in future. The jetty currently has information boards on the site’s history and is well-used whenever I’ve been there.

Taken from application

The jetty offers some great views which shows off the mini beach when the tide’s out:

Looking towards Morden Wharf from pier

Looking along the river from jetty:

Other parts of nearby riverside are due to see huge changes when the Morden Wharf residential development finally kicks off.

Morden Wharf plans

A total of 1,500 homes and a 37-floor tower are proposed.

If you’re not sure of things to do today you could do a lot worse than heading over to the Thames path and checking out the less known areas ot eh the Thames path before huge changes sweep in. Head to Enderby Wharf and go north.

Head past this point

Click here to view plans. You can comment until 12th December.

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J Smith

I've lived in south east London most of my life growing up in Greenwich borough and working in the area for many years. The site has contributors on occasion and we cover many different topics. Living and working in the area offers an insight into what is happening locally.

    12 thoughts on “Greenwich riverside path trees to be removed?

    • The trees were only put in 2002ish as part of a Groundwork scheme undertaken with the riverside path owners. I would be very happy to give lots of detail about the setting up of this scheme and why it collapsed so quickly – as new developers took over the sites.

      I am however aware – and thanks for pointing out – that it is important to use the river for transport and much else. We need to measure two trees against 100s of lorry movements which would be on the roads

      • Fuck the lorries! I fucking live here! I walk down the river. I pay tax! I save the trees stay!

      • Um…I see two trees. There may be more. They would absorb approx. 4 tons of Co2 in their lifetime. These tree’s are in the early stage of their life. A truck driving lets say 50 miles (taking into account long and short haul for the build) will generate around 0.0317 metric tons of CO₂.

        DO THE MATHS…

        This is purely about the people wanting a view of the river from their flats and to dissuade ‘pesky river walkers’.

    • I am all for using the river more to transport goods through London it it helps to remove heavy lorries from the streets of London.

      The rive Thames used to employ thousands of people at various sites and docks along the river. It would be good to see this regenerated again as part of dealing with traffic congestion and pollution on the capital roads while helping towards helping to keep London as one of the best capital Cities in the world.

      I do agree with Murky however, it would be nice if the willow tress could stay as part of any future schemes to use the jetty near this little beauty spot on the river.

    • The walk from the Cutty Sark to North Greenwich is one of the many pleasures of the city. Such pleasures are limited however if one doesn’t have the means to enjoy them. The walk is one of the few enjoyable flat stretches of the town that hasn’t been ‘discovered’ and while I’ll miss those trees and sandy shore I will enjoy seeing more bustle and activity along the river.

      • It’s certainly undiscovered by me. I have never walked the path as far as this point and probably won’t get the opportunity before the trees are removed.

    • Greenwich Council is hell bent on getting rid of nature. They are going to sell off the public green spaces in the Borough to private developers for building development. There will be no regard for the environment. Pollution is there priority. Just to fill the coffers

    • I often walk along the Thames from Woolwich to Greenwich. It’s always refreshing to see these trees after the Greenwich peninsula.It’s a little bit of unspoiled vegetation in a sea of urban regeneration. It’s important to keep a bit of green. These trees have survived, it seems a pity to cut them down for money!!??

    • Unfortunately, you won’t see any reduction in lorry movements as the main business will still be arriving and leaving via Tunnel Avenue. And barges being brought in by diesel tug have a negative impact on air quality too – it just doesn’t get measured along the Thames because it isn’t the responsibility of local authorities. You can say goodbye to the public wharf as well – we’re being offered a far-off swap with the unsurveyed Tunnel Wharf (which may not be structurally sound) WHEN/IF the housing development next to Enderby Wharf goes ahead. Not much certainty of that in the current property market.
      So goodbye willows, Primrose Pier, slightly cleaner air on the river. Of course, you can always make an objection on the Greenwich planning website if you think pedestrians and cyclists are getting a raw deal.

      • BY Tunnel Wharf do you mean the old Met Borough of Greenwich tip jetty – it only dates from the 1940s so shouldn’t be in too bad nick. It may have been surveyed by Groundwork since they did all the others. Not going along with this because not all will go by river is very negative – hopefully we should be working towards opening more closed wharves up and getting more on the river, where it should be . Hopefully you are lobbying PLA about the diesel tugs. The river isn’t a plaything – it should be one of the ways to a cleaner environment – and perhaps a more interesting one for the cyclists and walkers than the current sterile and unused state.

    • One thing which I have noticed but know little about. Port of London are consulting on amendments to their Parliamentary Act which includes all their rights and duties. Has anyone been through it? I would have hoped it included a new duty to monitor air quality over the river and powers to deal with it -but I couldn’t see anything. Is this a chance to lobby for that – or is there something I don’t know which is why its so quiet.

    • Me and my friend walk up there with our 4 dogs it so lovely when is greenwich going to stop all those flats bellway can’t sell what they got 1 lot of the flats there have work was stop on there last one cause they run out of money they just start to do itthose willow are so lovely and has any one notice just a few birds duck and lot of water bird not round any more please leave a bit of river alone


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