Limehouse, Shadwell and Wapping: Art, History and the Summer Sun, a set on Flickr.
This is the 44th set of photos in my ongoing project to photograph the whole of London by bike, and is the second set recording a journey I made, one sunny Sunday in July, with my wife and son from our home in south east London, through the Greenwich Foot Tunnel, up the western shore of the Isle of Dogs, which is infested with high-rise housing developments, and on to Limehouse, Shadwell and Wapping. Here the great wharves that dealt with the imports of Britain’s global trade during the heyday of Empire, and of the London docks, were converted into apartments during the Docklands development programme in the 1980s and 1990s. The first set of photos is here.
Money doesn’t scream, the way it does in Canary Wharf, in the narrow strips of former wharves in Limehouse, Shadwell and Wapping, although obviously most of the wharf living is aimed squarely at the rich, and elements of this are obvious — the matt grey Aston Martin that, for instance, almost ran me over at one point, driven by some young idiot who obviously believed the words of Formula 1 driver Sebastian Vettel: “Matte cars are cool, they come across as a bit aggressive.”
This second set of photos focuses primarily on Wapping, and the very attractive Wapping Project, an art gallery and restaurant in a former power station, where a lovely project in a greenhouse in the garden — possibly the hottest place in London on that particular day — involved In the Dark, enthusiasts for spoken word recordings, melting in the heat and trying to prevent their stock from melting too. They were a very friendly group of people, and a refreshing contrast to the area’s sports car drivers.
On the way back, we stopped in at another lovely place that deserves the support of everyone passing by — The Space on Westferry Road in Millwall, on the Isle of Dogs, a performing arts and community centre based in a converted church, which also serves food and drink.
Coming up next is another summer set, from Deptford, close to home and close to my heart in south east London, and I’ll then begin posting some of the 170 other photo sets I’ve been amassing since returning from my family holiday in Italy at the end of August. Thanks for your interest in my work!
Andy Worthington is the author of The Guantánamo Files: The Stories of the 774 Detainees in America’s Illegal Prison (published by Pluto Press, distributed by Macmillan in the US, and available from Amazon — click on the following for the US and the UK) and of two other books: Stonehenge: Celebration and Subversion and The Battle of the Beanfield. To receive new articles in your inbox, please subscribe to my RSS feed — and I can also be found on Facebook, Twitter, Digg, Flickr (my photos) and YouTube. Also see my definitive Guantánamo prisoner list, updated in April 2012, “The Complete Guantánamo Files,” a 70-part, million-word series drawing on files released by WikiLeaks in April 2011, and details about the documentary film, “Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo” (co-directed by Polly Nash and Andy Worthington, and available on DVD here — or here for the US). Also see my definitive Guantánamo habeas list and the chronological list of all my articles, and please also consider joining the new “Close Guantánamo campaign,” and, if you appreciate my work, feel free to make a donation.
On Facebook, George Kenneth Berger wrote:
I’m sharing these, Andy.
Thanks, George. Good to hear from you.
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