Alife and kicking – just

North Woolwich is an unloved part of east London. I’m sure it loved by the people who live there, but it feels like an abandoned place. We are experiencing hard economic times now but North Woolwich didn’t benefit from the boom years.

You’ll find North Woolwich if you get the Woolwich ferry or travel on the DLR to King George V or London City Airport.

It is surrounded by regeneration and economic activity but North Woolwich feels like it has been left behind.

And running right through the middle of it is the building of cross rail – the new rail route linking east and west London. What has this regeneration project done for North Woolwich apart from carve a building site right through it? If it has created any jobs, I doubt that they have replaced those that have gone.  A few shops and pubs are clinging on to life and there is even an optimistic developer building a block of ‘luxury’ flats but the many factories which lined Albert Road and the aptly named Factory Road are now derelict as are many of the pubs.

A man walks past a derelict factory

A man and boy sitting outside a derelict pub

Derelict factory

Derelict factory building

A derelict Victorian pub

6 thoughts on “Alife and kicking – just

    1. It’s very sad. There are many neglected areas of London. North Woolwich is in the same borough as the Olympic Park! So many councils are just selling off land to developers to build luxury flats which will be bought by foreign investors. Where are the rest of us supposed to live? And where will people work if every building is luxury flats?

  1. Ain’t austerity just grand? I realize many of liberal experiments of the 70’s weren’t perfect, but could we please sit down and come up with some common sense, realistic solutions, like maybe jobs? We actually know what works and doesn’t work with reasonable certainty, and it’s not austerity and anything-goes-capitalism run amok.

    Anyway, your images provoke powerful responses, nicely done, excellent photo essay on economic blight.

    1. Thank you. I get very upset by how this Government is reacting to an economic downturn and recession. Blaming benefits “scroungers”, talking about “taxpayer-funded housing” instead of “social housing” and completely ignoring the housing crisis we have on our hands in London which must also be a problem in other cities. When are they going to do something about the lack of affordable housing? When families are living rough? They’ll probably blame them as “problem families”

  2. It just makes me angry when I hear that around 4500 people are sleeping rough on the streets of London, every night. This… in the 4th/5th richest country in the world. This… in Boris’s clean and wonderful London. I wonder if he has ever wandered more than a hundred from the litter free tourist zone of Southbank and corporate City.

    Nice reportage and honest photography.

    1. There are a lot of people who are being very hard hit by the economic downturn and who won’t see any benefit from the Olympics. Too many people fall through the cracks.
      This area of North Woolwich was built to house dock workers when London’s docks were busy with trade from around the world. It’s a shame to see all these disused factories and pubs that have closed down. It feels like a community that has been forgotten.

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