New Woolwich leisure centre: Demo plans submitted

Plans to demolish Viscount House in Woolwich for a new leisure centre have been submitted.

The former home of Wilko and various other shops over the years will come down between August 2022 and January 2023.


This project has taken many years to reach this point and is some way behind schedule.

Timeline – which can still change

The eastern half of the site has already been reduced to rubble between 2020-21:

Some sections already brought down

The main structure however remains, with one shop still trading.

Land here is set to become a mixed-use development, with leisure centre facilities built closest to General Gordon Square and almost 500 homes to the rear.

This view will soon change

The new proposal has drawn some criticism for demolishing a relatively new building and the carbon impact of that.

Viscount House only dates from the 1980s and was the result of a long-planned attempt to build a shopping centre precinct in the area.


It would also have included a civic centre before the plan eventually collapsed. Not before there was land clearance in the area.

Viscount House was built instead on part of the wider site and housed Gateway supermarket before it changed hands a number of times. General Gordon Square was built as a public space, before it’s 2012 revamp.

Viewed from General Gordon Square – itself a result of earlier stalled plans

The last occupant of the main unit in Viscount House was Wilko. They left for Charlton leaving no presence in Woolwich.


The new centre also allows passers by to view into the new leisure centre which has drawn some unease.

Planned centre

Initially those concerns were centred on rooms facing the busy bus stops, though submitted plans show views into the centre from public space set to be located between the new centre, shops and housing to the rear.

Upon completion Waterfront beside the Thames would close.

Current Woolwich leisure centre

The latest estimate for the new centre to open is 2025.

Click here to view the application laying out demolition plans for Viscount House.


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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.

One thought on “New Woolwich leisure centre: Demo plans submitted

  • Let’s hope the new Woolwich Leisure Centre can meet the 2025 opening date. The new Woolwich Centre along with all the new facilities are needed after many complaints about the old Waterfront Leisure Centre. The new Leisure Centre will be more centrally located in Woolwich over looking General Gordon Place close to better. transport links making easier to get too.


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