Thames Barrier Park is a 7-hectare green space located in the Royal Docks - an area in the London Borough of Newham. The park is managed by the Greater London Authority. Opened in November 2000 it was London’s largest new riverside park for over 50 years. There is abundant wildlife and picnic and children’s play areas, a basketball court, visitor pavilion and coffee shop with views of the river and Thames Barrier.
Thames Barrier Park
About the park
Thames Barrier Park was designed by landscape architect Allain Provost (Groupe Signes) of Paris and architects Patel Taylor of London. Remarkably, the park was created on a site that once housed petrochemical and acid works on the Thames riverbank. The contaminated soil was covered with a 6 foot layer of crushed concrete to protect the new soil laid on top. Since its opening the park has won design awards in the UK and USA.
The parks design features 32 fountains in a stone courtyard and family facilities including children’s play and picnic areas. The fountains are temporarily closed while development works take place at Pontoon Dock
One of the most eye-catching features of the park is the 'Green Dock', a 130 foot long sunken garden running diagonally through the park that is intended as a reminder of the site's dockland heritage. The 'Green Dock' provides a wind protected microclimate for a variety of plants and wildlife.
Two bridges cross the Green Dock and reveal vistas across the colourful, scented gardens. The park also boasts extensive lawns that are crossed by gravel pathways and bordered by yew and maygreen hedges.
The park is carefully tended to display variety throughout the year, and provide a welcome habitat for birds and insects.
Visiting the park
Thames Barrier Park is open daily, from 07:00. Find out how to get there, as well as what facilities are available.
Pontoon Dock development
The access to the park is currently restricted due to the residential-led development to the north of the park, due for completion in late 2019. During this time the park is accessed via a level entrance to the eastern furthest corner and a stepped entrance to the furthest western corner, there is also a level access adjacent to the western steps.
The scheme will deliver 236 new high-quality Private Rented Sector and Affordable homes whilst also providing improved amenities, active frontage and an enhanced public space. This will involve a complete reconfiguration of the pre-existing car park and an associated access ramp that had been connected via a bridge link to the intermediate mezzanine level of the DLR station.
The facilities were previously designed to accommodate both visitor car and coach parking, however, this had created a situation where the park had limited visibility from the street or actual permeability by way of access for pedestrians from the North Woolwich Road, thus disconnecting the street environment and public space within the park.
The replacement new entrance to the park will align with the existing park café pavilion and will rise from street level via an improved access to meet inclusive design requirements with both a staggered ramped entrance and a more direct stepped entrance. This alignment will in the future meet at the street level with a proposed enhanced DLR station access that has been designed to incorporate dual escalators from the platforms above, thereby reconnecting the North Woolwich Road to both DLR and to the park.
Friends of Thames Barrier Park
If you are interested in forming a friends group for Thames Barrier Park we would like to hear from you. Please contact [email protected]