Royal Docks London

27th July 2007, 07:54
The other day I was viewing another interest of mine (aircraft) and came across a photo of the airport that has been built from what I gather in the now disused Royal Docks.

The photo was taken from the cockpit widow of a aircraft on approach and is very impressive. To think some 40 odd years ago I would have to tramp the length of these docks to visit Mr Sibley at Shaw Savills dock office which was situated the nearest end of the runway.

It seems to have shrunk in length from what I remember or is it the angle the photo has been taken on.

The pubs Roundhouse and Kent to name a couple were to the left of this photo .Or the 101 bus to East Ham. Quite a walk on a cold winters night.

The link below is to the photo.

27th July 2007, 09:43
That is very interesting, I would love to see a similar photo taken 30 years ago from the same angle for comparison. Al.

noel robson
27th July 2007, 13:20
I'm surprised that any one would walk the length of the dock to see Mr.Sibley
I'm even more surprised that he would remember to be there.There are a few ships crews that may even now be wandering about Scotland looking for there
ships,which where parked around the corner from the office.[=P] [=P]
Any one remember the Central(I think)right in the middle of the Albert it was only open from about 0700 in the morning until about 19.00,dockers hours.

27th July 2007, 13:48
Is that London City Centre Airport?


27th July 2007, 13:48
its just the angle the photo is taken at, its still as long if you walked from the roundhouse pub to the mansion house pub.

27th July 2007, 13:58
Noel, Are you sure it wasn't called the 'Connaught', It was still standing around 6 years ago although derelict.

27th July 2007, 14:14
yes skymaster it is the lodon city airport

PollY Anna
27th July 2007, 20:49
I took some photos of the Royal Docks last year most of the pubs are derelict, but the docks look wonderful no ships very few cranes no dunnage and no detritus in the water but no soul. It seems such a waste all that space and it is not very much used. Local schools use the West end of Vic Dock for canoeing which is great, to let the local kids get a feel for water.

I am not sure if they are informed about the history of the docks and all the cargoes from the Empire that came into those docks and all the cargoes that went around the World. The thousands of people that were employed within the area. The list is endless you don't need me to list them.

Now we have this Airport with planes flying in and out of the Continent, along with a private jet centre servicing up to 40 + private flights for all city types and neuvo rich, employing a lot less people with the Excel centre + a few hotels it still does not have the vibrance that it had in the sixty's

noel robson
27th July 2007, 21:12
Na the Connaught was just outside the main gate at the vic end of albert,I think.If you look at an up to date map there is a roundabout or short road named after it.(Thumb)Not sure if Central was its proper name,but it was always called that.there was a similar pub in Tilbury docks.

27th July 2007, 21:30
Thanks for sharing the picture Raybanz.................... Ah yes Mr Sibley at the SSA Office South Side Albert Dock............. The Dock Office.... Remember the Captain on Cretic ( Capt. Vizer)only wore his cap ( on the whole voyage) when we sailed past.........This Holy of Holys...
Remember the Roundhouse and those Summer Evenings walking to or from the ship. The Snowbow Videos are worth getting if you want to see moving pictures of the Royals - Then and Now!

27th July 2007, 22:11
Hi Raybnz
Great picture, its definately shortend by the angle. i knew the docks well in the 50's & 60's. The expanse of water on the left was the King George V dock and the one on the left was the Royal Albert dock, beyond the bridge at the far end was the Royal Victoria Dock. The large expanse of concret on the far right was where the Central Hotel was situated. The Ellerman ships docked opposite the hotel, great place for dockers dinners, much better than the PLA canteen bottom right, near the Shaw Savill offices. Top right of the Albert dock was the banana berth & just below it was where the ships of NZSC berthed. As a point of interest the vintage motor cycle club hold a sprint meeting once a year on the runway. for a picture of the dock in its halcyon days check out

27th July 2007, 22:13
Great photo,have copied for leisurely scrutiny.Would agree KGv seems smaller.I seem to recall we went into dry dock right up the end of the runway & that area has been filled in.Pity it did not scan more to the left To show the Roundhouse & entry lock. Paradox a huge piece of SN on an aircraft site. Kiwi

Hugh Ferguson
28th July 2007, 13:40
As it was 50 years ago!

2nd August 2007, 10:02
You can clearly see “Stornoway Castle” the old Flying Angel and the “Freemasons Arms” on the corner of Victoria Dock Road and Freemasons Road, Canning Town, just on the right edge of the photo across from the two large warehouses on the right side of the old “Vic”.

non descript
2nd August 2007, 12:41
A great image Raybnz, thanks for posting it. Rather than me make a bad guess, may I ask if anyone can point out where Z Shed was please?

2nd August 2007, 16:08
Hi all, "Z" shed was the last shed in the Royal Victoria Dock at the Tidal Basin end. I tallied the meat for Weddel in the 1950's. Signalman.

2nd August 2007, 17:40
Don't forget the KG V dry-dock which I think sits under the Terminal apron. I had the pleasure of being there on the British Valour in May 1971. Spent the next 2 months at sea repairing the dry-dock repairs