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EA repair Saxon dock

One of London's last remaining Anglo-Saxon waterfront features is under repair by the Environmental Agency and the City of London Corporation at a cost of £1.7M.

Queenhithe Wharf on Upper Thames Street, Southwark, was originally built as a present from King Alfred the Great to his brother-in-law Ethelred in 883AD.

The wharf protects a 5.6 hectare area of high value central London property - including Cannon Street Station - from potential flooding.

The dock, including the wharf and roadway, was designated a Scheduled Ancient Monument in 1973 and is the only surviving inlet on the modern city waterfront.

The dock consists of a masonry wall divided into three distinct sections, with a total length of 54.6m, northern and southern sections are made from granite masonry while the middle section is a pale sandstone or limestone.

Specialist contractor Systems Geotechnique Fondedile will install over 400 grouted mini-piles through masonry blocks at varying angles to provide support to the wall, which has deteriorated in recent years. These mini-piles are designed to carry the loads imposed by the tidal waters and by the roadway to the rear of the wall, relieving the load carried by the masonry at present.

The overall height of the defence will also be increased to provide greater flood protection for Southwark with the road being re-laid at a higher level to match that of the pavement to allow better access for wheelchair users.

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