Peruvian Wharf in Newham will be developed as a centre for low-carbon transport of building materials in East London
Peruvian Wharf in Newham will be developed as a centre for low-carbon transport of building materials in East London

East London wharf returns to cargo handling

29 November 2016

An East London wharf is to be returned to handling cargo after it was bought by the Port of London Authority (PLA).

Peruvian Wharf in Newham will be developed as a centre for low-carbon transport of building materials in East London. A new access road to the site will be completed, and it will be let on a long-term lease to construction and building materials firm Brett Group. Brett will develop an integrated terminal on the site, which is expected to be operational in late 2017.

The PLA paid more than £3m for the site. PLA chief executive Robin Mortimer said: “We’ve fought long and hard to get Peruvian Wharf back into use. It’s ideally placed to service East London’s growth, underlining the importance of retaining strategically located sites for cargo handling.”

Mortimer said the river would play a key role in servicing the construction of at least 260,000 new homes, as well as keep tens of thousands of lorries off London’s roads every year, reducing air pollution. 

Some 50 wharves on the River Thames have been safeguarded for cargo-handling use by the secretary of state for transport, following the advice of the mayor of London and the PLA. 

Peruvian Wharf is one of three currently vacant wharves in the PLA’s Thames Vision to be brought back into long-term use. The others are Hurlingham Wharf in Hammersmith & Fulham and Orchard Wharf in Tower Hamlets.

The last cargo was handled at Peruvian Wharf in 1993 and it was a cargo shipping berth for more than 100 years. Tate & Lyle used it for transporting sugar and coal to what was known as “the sugar mile” because of the number of treacle refineries and jam makers.

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