Freight boat on the Thames

Safeguarded Wharves Review

There is a network of wharves along the Thames that are protected for use as a wharf by a safeguarding Direction issued by the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government. The network dates from 2005 so a review is overdue. The Mayor has undertaken a review and is recommending some changes to the network.

Safeguarded Wharves Review 2018

The Mayor has issued the following suite of documents for a 3 month public consultation that closes at 5pm on Friday 17th August.


An inconsistency has been noted between the SEA map for Royal Primrose Wharf and the individual site assessment map for this wharf. This inconsistency has been corrected. The Mayor does not consider this change to be significant but in the interests of fairness has decided to extend consultation by a further two weeks to 5pm Friday 17th August.


Once the consultation closes the Mayor will carefully consider the responses received and may propose further changes to the network. Once the issues have been considered in full by the Mayor he will submit his recommendations for safeguarding to the Secretary of State. It will then be for the Secretary of State to determine which wharves he chooses to safeguard and those he chooses to de-safeguard.


The Mayor is consulting on the following documents;


All of these documents are available for public consultation until 5pm on Friday 17th August.

Details of how you can respond to the consultation are set out in the consultation draft report.

Safeguarded Wharves: London Plan Implementation Report 2005

As noted above, the current network dates from 2005, information on the network can be found here;

Safeguarded Wharves on the River Thames: London Plan Implementation Report

This led to the confirmation/issuing of related Safeguarded Wharves Directions by the Secretary of State. These Directions require that all planning applications affecting the wharves must be referred to the Mayor. All Directions can be found on the Safeguarded Wharves Direction page.

Safeguarded Wharves Review 2011/2013

An attempt was made by the Mayor to update the network in 2011-13. The Secretary of State chose not to endorse the recommended changes.

In October 2011 the Mayor published a consultation setting out the results of a review of the safeguarding of wharves on London's waterways in partnership with Transport for London (TfL), the Port of London Authority and the Canal and River Trust. The Review concluded with an overview of proposed ways to address identified future capacity surpluses and deficits, and recommendations for the future safeguarding or release of individual wharves. Annex 5 includes site assessments for all wharves as a separate document.

The consultation draft and Annex 5 can be downloaded below.

In July 2012 the Mayor published a Further Consultation draft. Documents relating to this further consultation can be found below.

In March 2013 a ‘Final Recommendation’ document for submission to the Secretary of State for approval and issue of required new/revised Safeguarding Directions was produced. The documents can be found below.