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London’s Royal Docks

The Royal Docks are London’s unique and historic water space – some four kilometres long, the equivalent of walking from Oxford Circus to Bank. They were once the largest enclosed docks in the world and today the 250 acres of water provide a spectacular setting for the area’s transformation into a vibrant 21st century destination to live, work and play. It’s never been easier to get here – and few areas of London can boast of a more dramatic method of transportation than the Emirates Air Line across the river Thames.

London’s Royal Docks are home to a host of attractions, events and activities, all centred around the water. The heritage and history of the area plays an all-important part in the continuing story of the docks. It’s the combination of old and new that makes this place so special, as communities grow, new restaurants, cafés and bars open and the calendar of activities gets busier with each month. Welcome to London’s Royals Docks. We hope you enjoy your time here.

Latest news

The Community Shop Newham

The Community Shop Newham has now closed. The project was very successful and we have been informed that trading at the Corniche was a great experience for all the traders involved. Thank you to everyone who supported this venture.

Royal Docks Management Authority (RoDMA)

The Community Shop Newham

Please come along and support The Community Shop Newham. You can shop their selection of handcrafted gifts made by local artisans or attend one of their craft workshops or events. They will be open until 22 August 2022.

A Right Royal Docks Jubilee!

A party fit for a Queen is in store when the Commonwealth Games Baton Relay arrives in the Royal Docks on Sunday 5 June to mark Her Majesty’s Platinum Jubilee. Head to the Royal Docks on the newly opened Elizabeth line (arriving at Custom House) for A Right Royal Docks Jubilee! featuring grime artists, world-class ballet dancers, sculptors, painters, footballers, a flotilla, street parties and a free concert called A Right Royal Docks Knees Up.

The Queen’s Baton Relay gets the party started in style, as it travels around this vibrant part of London, visiting all the events taking place to celebrate the Queen’s historic 70 years of service. Take a look at some of the places you can see it, and the exciting events happening across the day. #RDJubilee

Key moments to look out for ahead of the finale concert, include:

Ballet and Boats – ExCeL and Dockside, 2.30pm-3.30pm

(DLR: Custom House)

The party starts when the Queen’s Baton Relay arrives at Royal Victoria Square by ExCel at 2.30pm for an exclusive performance by English National Ballet’s ENBYouthCo featuring local dancers and a new score by pianist Benjamin Kahn.  Then the baton takes to the dock waters on a 25-boat flotilla. Head to the waterside from 3pm to see it travel across Royal Victoria Dock to Royal Albert Wharf on dragon boats, rowing boats and lifeboats.

Festive Family Arts – Pumping Station Square, 4pm

(DLR: Gallions Reach)

Meet professional artists from Bow Arts’ RAW Labs and join in free drawing, sculpting and puppeteering sessions for all the family, plus music, food and drinks.

A Right Royal Docks Knees Up – Royal Victoria Gardens 3pm-8pm

(DLR: King George V)

Don’t miss this exciting celebration concert in the park named after the Queen’s great-great-grandmother, including:

  • Traditional East London pram race
  • Music from Vincent Bugozi (Afrobeat, Reggae, Afrocuban, and Pop) and Capitol Motown And Soul Band
  • Bollywood-inspired dance by BollyRed dancers
  • Performances by young people from Ruff Sqwad Arts Foundation

Food and drink stalls

A Right Royal Jubilee Events Page



RVD Footbridge – Lifts

The Royal Victoria Dock (RVD) Footbridge is a high-level bridge which bisects RVD and provides a route from Excel (close to the DLR Custom House Station) over to Britannia Village. It had two lifts that were installed at each end of the bridge.  These lifts were poorly designed for the situation.  The top of the lifts are open to the elements and should have been fully enclosed.  This has caused numerous issues over the years.  The lifts are now beyond their economic life and have real reliability issues, regardless of the sums of money which are spent on them.

RoDMA are responsible for the maintenance and refurbishment of the RVD Footbridge, but not capital replacement of items such as the lifts. In 2014 it was announced that the developer for the Silvertown Quays (Millennium Mills) had included in their design a new bridge at dock level to cross RVD from the same location on the Excel side to link up with the new development and provide direct access from the planned Crossrail Station.  The intention was to have an opening (swing bridge) mechanism to allow ships to pass into the western end of RVD.  The plan was that the high-level bridge would then be removed.  At this point it was decided that no further options would be considered for replacement of the lifts and that their life would be extended until the new bridge was constructed.  This was delayed when the investor pulled out of the development but was recommenced by the new developer in 2018.

In 2016 a decision was made to reduce the number of operating lifts on each side to one and focus all the effort in keeping these two running. In 2017, £40k was spent on refurbishing the bridge, dealing with corrosion spots and refreshing the paintwork.  Many planks on the top of the bridge and walkways were also replaced.  This was followed later in that year by investing a similar amount in the lifts to replace the door controllers and increase their reliability under guidance from Alimak, the manufacturer.  This has increased their reliability, but the lifts are still subject to random breakdowns.  Towards the end of 2018, RoDMA invested in a purchasing spare parts for the most likely breakdowns to save on the manufacturers extended lead times.  The has resulted in a reduction in time from failure to rectification.

In 2018 a decision was made by the GLA to retain the existing bridge. RoDMA have had feasibility studies conducted to look at design options to replace/modernise certain elements of the lifts. We currently await a breakdown of costings before this project can be advanced.

The bridge is cleaned daily. Unfortunately, RoDMA staff have to deal regularly with the results of individuals urinating and defecating in the lifts.  The doors of the lifts are frequently kicked in by individuals which causes failure and then they have to be removed from service.  RoDMA continue to do all they can to present the bridge in its best condition and welcome the support of the general public in doing so.

Unfortunately, because of the age and uniqueness of the equipment some parts are not readily available, a consequence being that these parts must be made to order, which incurs a long lead time. The lift contractor has attended site several times recently and did restore functionality of the lifts. However, after several weeks of operation there is now a fault on the NE lift door closing mechanism, which is being addressed within the next week.

When a problem arises with one lift RoDMA are obligated to secure power to both sides of the bridge.

We apologise for the continuing inconvenience this causes the people which live and work around the area, everything is being done to ensure the lifts become operational as soon as possible.