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Forgotten Spaces: Third Place – Thames Archipelago by Craft Pegg

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[TOWER HAMLETS] Floating natural habitats on East India Dock

London may owe it existence to the Thames, but Craft Pegg see the river as the capital’s most significant forgotten space. They quote London biographer Peter Ackroyd, who wrote that modern Londoners have ‘no contact with what was once the source and centre of the city’s being’.

Modern Londoners have ‘no contact with what was once the source and centre of the city’s being’

Craft Pegg’s Thames Archipelago project seeks to reinstate the importance of the Thames with a series of ecological stepping stones along a section at Leamouth where the River Lea enters the Thames at East India basin. The scheme involves building of a chain of eco-rafts that will support plant and animal life both above the water, at the water’s edge and below its surface. This will provide a viable habitat for fish, invertebrates, insects, birds and plant life that will connect right through the heart of the city.

Neighboring communities will benefit from proximity to the moveable eco-rafts, both as a visual asset and as a chance to explore the rafts which will be circulated to and from accessible moorings for supervised exploration. The rest of the time they will be sited out of reach to all but the most intrepid explorers so they can develop undisturbed.


Forgotten Spaces: All 20 shortlisted entries feature in a public exhibition at the National Theatre until 4 July www.nationaltheatre.org.uk


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