An Isle of Dogs (west) Walk

Route & what to see

A 3 mile linear walk from Island Gardens DLR to Heron Quays DLR featuring pre WWII features. There is some overlap with the east route.

From the station go left along Manchester Road
The church of Christ Church & St John was designed by Frederick Johnstone in 1852-4 and paid for by William Cubitt. It was repaired and given a larger vestry in 1906-7.

Right at Glenworth Avenue
The small house on the corner was built as a Manual Training Centre in 1909. It is now part of St Luke’s Primary School, rebuilt after WWII bombing but incorporating 1930s parts of the former Board School.

Go right along Saunders Ness Road to Newcastle Drawdock.
This dates to the 1840s. Set into the wall are some fragments from a chapel destroyed in WWII. There is an information board about Cubitt Town. The Waterman’s Arms pub of 1853 is probably by Cubitt. A piece of waste ground on the right has a curious folly.

Walk through Island Gardens to the left
The park was laid out by J J Sexby on land that had been purchased from Cubitt by Greenwich Hospital in 1850 to preserve it from development. The foot tunnel was designed by Sir Alexander Binnie and opened in 1902.

Head inland and go left at Manchester Road.
Further along are the Lord Nelson pub (1855) and a former Fire Station of 1904-5 with firemen’s cottages to the north.

Right at East Ferry Road
Some Victorian houses have attractive path and porch tiles. Millwall Park was designed as an LCC recreation ground in 1919. Remnants of the Millwall Viaduct are visable across the park to the right. This railway service which started in 1872 and closed 1926 was known as the 'Penny Puffer'. Until the DLR was extended to Lewisham it utilised this viaduct. The Docklands Settlement building houses the Island History Trust photograph collection. It was built in 1905 as as a club for local women.

Opposite this go along Chapelhouse Street
This area was developed in 1919-20 by Poplar Borough Council as 'Homes for Heroes' of WWI and is now a conservation area.

Past Thermopylae Gate take the footpath on the right and at the end go to the left around Hesperus Cresent.
These houses were added in 1929-30.
Some have garden walls made from ceramic waste and brick rubble.

Left at Harbinger Road.
Terraces of cottages built in 1902-4 remain in this road and in nearby Cahir Street. Harbinger Primary School of 1872-3 is an early Board School designed by R Phene Spiers. It was remodelled in 1906-8 and a schoolkeeper’s house added in 1909. There is a tiled nameplate on the Marsh Street frontage.

At the end go left along Westferry Road
The Forge was built in 1860 for CJ Mare & Co as part of the Millwall Ironworks.

Go through the Burrell's Wharf complex opposite
This was a shipyard until 1888 when it was adapted to produce dyes and paints. It is now a residential and business development of new-build and conversions including the former Plate House, Gantry House and Mast House.

Go through to the river then right along the riverwalk
On the right are the remains of the slipway from which Brunel's Great Eastern (constructed 1853-8) was launched.

Where the riverside path ends go right (signposted) then left along Westferry Road
The Space arts centre is housed in the former Presbyterian chapel of St Paul's with its vestry and classrooms. This was designed by Thomas Knightley in 1859 to serve the Scottish workers in Scott Russell's shipyard. Further along Dockers Tanner Road commemorates the docker's fight for pay of sixpence an hour.

Detour right to view Millwall Dock (now a watersports Centre) and left to the former dock entrance.
Although filled in there are some remnants including bollards and a hydraulic jigger (1875)

Return to Westferry Road and continue.
On the left is Sir John McDougall Gardens.

Walk through the garden on the opposite side of the road.
This is dedicated to the people who have lived and worked on the Isle of Dogs (opened in 2001).

Left along Tiller Road then left at Alpha Grove. Detour into Janet Street
St Hubert’s House was built 1935-6 for the Isle of Dogs Housing Society. The washing line posts feature the stags of St Hubert.

Return to and continue along Alpha Grove.
The community centre was converted in the 1970s from a Wesleyan Chapel of 1887 and its hall (1926). Note the initialled bricks. Further along is St Luke’s Church. This was bombed out during WWII since when it has carried on with a make-shift chapel, tacked on to the church hall. It is planned to provide a new centre for the community, permanent homes for Docklands Outreach and the Millwall Bangladeshi Association and a beautiful new church. 2 million of the estimated 2.7 million cost has been raised by negotiating a lease with a Property Development Company to build affordable housing on part of the site. [
church website] There is a war memorial on the site.

At the end go left along Strafford Street then right at Westferry Road
On the right is the new Millwall Fire Station. Next door is the (closed) Anchor & Hope pub. On the corner of Cuba Street (developed in 1807) the former Blacksmith's Arms is now an Indian restaurant.

Go right along Cuba Street and up the steps at the end. Cross and go right along Marsh Wall. Bear left to the dockside and cross the bridge to Heron Quays Station.

THE ISLAND HISTORY TRUST has a collection of over 5000 captioned photographs covering everyday life on the Isle of Dogs plus a ephemera collection of documents. The Trust became a Friends organisation in 2013/4. Membership cost 10 per year. 2010

[east route] [additional information] [walkslist]