Wapping and the old London Docks
The Viewing Platform
You should now be standing outside the the viewing platform, which is near the Tower Hill underground station, and over-looking the Tower of London.
Today we will walk through the former London Docks, constructed in Wapping in 1805. The docks were closed in 1969, but many of the former wharves and warehouses have been preserved and converted into modern apartments. This ancient village which stretches between the Tower of London and Limehouse has always been associated with seafarers. They tended to live a life apart from the rest of London, although in the eighteenth century the 36 pubs along the riverfront attracted many visitors.
Now let me explain how VoiceMap works. It uses your location to play commentary automatically. I’ll give you directions to keep you on track, so you can just put your phone away and focus on your surroundings.
Let me introduce myself: My name is Brian Cookson. I spent all my working life in London, but until the 1980s the area east of Tower Bridge was largely inaccessible to the public as the London Docks were being closed down and redeveloped. After retirement I qualified as a London Blue Badge Guide and am now fascinated by all the history and sights to be found in the former docklands.
Now, we’re going to get started. If you’re facing the Tower of London, turn right and walk down the steps from the viewing platform. Once at the bottom of the steps, turn left.