News in London and beyond


After 13 years of delay, Woolwich tower now visible above ground

Render from 2018 planning document

A proposed tower on a plot beside the Woolwich ferry is finally rising and now visible above ground after 13 years of delays.

Mast Quay stage 1 was completed in the 2000s yet despite planning approval, Comer Homes never started stage 2, which is a 22-floor tower.

Phase 1 of Mast Quay

Firstly the financial crises hit, then the subsequent fallout hampered attempts to build. When applications were made in the 2010s, the Irish Resolution Bank was mentioned. This is an organisation that dealt with the fallout of the credit crunch.

Forthcoming tower on left

A year ago work on site was underway to clear the area, but whether that meant the tower would start was another matter. It finally has. Click here to see photos.

Work on site in 2019

Another issue resulting from such a lengthy delay was a lack of monitoring of the Thames wall. That resulted in a collapse, which I covered here.

Once the new tower completes, the low rise nature of Waterfront leisure centre will stand out yet further with tall buildings encroaching either side.

Towers to east – waterfront just visible on bottom right corner

We know the leisure centre is moving and will close, which will almost certainly result in towers filling the gap.

Courtesy Google. Mast Quay site in red. Berkeley towers site in orange.

Hopefully a new development will follow through on earlier ideas to extend Hare Street back to the river, as it once did. The original ferry crossing was located there.

Looking down Hare Street today

That would then offer a view down from Powis Street to the Thames.

Mast Quay 2 will total 218 flats. Section 106 income to Greenwich Council is allocated thus:

Open space: £296,000

GLLaB: £168,000

Education: £143,000

Community facilities: £122,000

Emergency services: £71,000

Public realm: £7,000


  1. Sacha

    Public realm getting £7k whilst GLLAB gets £168k? Crazy.

  2. Ashley

    No wonder our Public Realm fell into disrepair when this pathetic Labour administration pushes more to the failing GLLAB. More needs to be done to rejuvenate our streets!

    • Graham

      I agree Ashley we have a great Borough (Greenwich) lets improve our streets and public realm so we can keep the Borough a great place to live work and visit.

  3. Yogesh Sharma

    Possibly a dumb question… what exactly does GLLaB actually do for the benefit of the Borough’s residents to warrant all the funding that gets piped their way…

    • Graham

      The truth of the matter is not a lot for the majority of the general public of Greenwich Borough.

  4. CDT

    If the £168,00 is not going to be spent on public realm or other essential front line services for vulnerable child/adults the elderly or disabled.

    Then rather than the £168,000 going to GLLAB if think it would be much better spent going to help residents of the Borough fight the Coronavirus by supporting the hubs, food banks, homeless and people shielding due to underlying health conditions,

    So please keep well keep safe and adhere to the Coronavirus rules everyone !!

  5. CDT

    Good to see the Tower finally being built after all this time. Providing more new homes.

  6. Lord Lew Can

    Let’s just hope they don’t wrap it in highly flammable insulation material (polystyrene) and forget to install fire breaks between flats like Barratt Homes did in so many cases. Then 15 years later charge leaseholders unlimited sums for putting their errors right.

  7. CDT

    Yes very true Lord Lew Can. Rather than cladding I would much rather see a nice brick finish with better quality windows and heating systems installed to help make homes more energy efficient.

    I think a good example of a nice brick finished development is the Wellington Quarter on Wellington Street in Woolwich.

  8. dockingmushrooms

    Cladding on mast quay looks a lot like the cladding on Royal Artillery Quays

    • Arthur

      Out of interest what does cladding look like, I live in mast Quay and my heart sank when I read your comment.

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