A Riverboat Service Between Kent And Central London Is One Step Closer

Laura Reynolds
By Laura Reynolds Last edited 7 months ago
A Riverboat Service Between Kent And Central London Is One Step Closer
Photo: Uber Boat by Thames Clippers

A riverboat service between Kent and central London is one step closer, as a town pier is due to be sold to Thames Clippers.

Gravesham Council has agreed to the sale of Gravesend Town Pier to Thames Clippers, which will use it to provide an Uber Boat service down the Thames into London, according to Kent Online.

If the sale goes ahead, Thames Clippers will be responsible for the upkeep of the pier — the oldest remaining cast iron pier in the world — and a Grade II* listed structure, located on the south bank of the Thames, east of the Queen Elizabeth II road bridge.

the ornate gravesend pier
The ornate Gravesend pier would be the destination for boats coming from central London. Image: Creative Commons

Currently, Uber Boat by Thames Clippers operates regular routes between Putney and Woolwich, offering interchanges with other transport such as tube, DLR and London Overground stations. This would be its first regular service outside of the capital.

A trial service between London and Gravesend took place in 2017, to establish whether there was enough demand for the service. Since then, Uber Boat by Thames Clippers has offered occasional day trip and leisure services from Gravesend, but little has happened in the way of establishing the riverboat route out to Kent. But with the sale of the pier set to be finalised in the coming weeks, that could soon be set to change.

The plans are not without their detractors; a spokesperson from The Gravesend Historical Society, fears that lack of public ownership will mean the pier could fall into disrepair again.

Last Updated 23 February 2022

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