The Thamesmead Canal Habitat Enhancement Project is a partnership between Thames21 and Peabody, one of London’s oldest and largest housing providers. The project has the support of Peabody, the London Borough of Bexley and substantial funding from The Cory Environmental Trust.

Built on reclaimed Thames marshlands, the Thamesmead area features 7km of canal and five major lakes, all owned and managed by Peabody. This network is part of a complex drainage system that protects local residents and businesses from flooding.

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Above: Thamesmead Canal

This project began in November 2016 and is enhancing the Thamesmead Canals, focusing on the Harrow Canal in Arnott Close and Crossway Canal in Crossway Park. This work is being achieved by creating more natural habitats along the canal edges, helping wildlife to flourish and improving the space for the local community to enjoy.

It is providing opportunities for volunteers to get directly involved and learn how to carry out activities to create and restore natural habitats.

canalatwalshamcloseLeft: The Canal section at Walsham Close

Education is a key part of the project. Local schools will be introduced to  these outdoor surroundings as teaching tools linked to their curriculum learning. Youth groups will also be encouraged to use and take ownership of a unique loved part of Thamesmead’s landscape.



Left: South view from the central footbridge at Crossways Park

Thamesmead’s canals and lakes are a valuable natural resource and defining feature for the area.  Thames21 wants to ensure we involve as many local people in the care and improvement of these canals.

For further details about the project, to get involved, or to subscribe to the bi-monthly newsletter, please email Jessica Becher.