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Along The Regent’s Canal

January 29, 2020
by the gentle author

The Regent’s Canal is two hundred years old this year so I thought I would take advantage of yesterday’s January sunshine to enjoy a ramble along the towpath with my camera, tracing its arc which bounds the northern extent of the East End. At first there was just me, some moorhens, a lonely swan, and a cormorant, but as the morning wore on cyclists and joggers appeared. Starting at Limehouse Basin, I walked west along the canal until I reached the Kingsland Rd. By then clouds had gathered and my hands had turned blue, so I returned home to Spitalfields hoping for another bright day soon when I can resume my journey onward to Paddington Basin.

At Limehouse Basin

Commercial Rd Bridge

Johnson’s Lock

Lock keeper’s cottage at Johnson’s Lock

Great Eastern Railway bridge

Great Eastern Railway bridge

Salmon Lane Lock

Barge dweller mooring his craft

Solebay St Bridge

Mile End Rd bridge

Cyclist at Mile End Rd bridge

Looking through Mile End Rd bridge

Mile End Lock keeper’s cottage

Looking back towards the towers of Canary Wharf

At the junction with Hertford Union Canal

Old Ford Lock

Victoria Park Bridge

Victoria Park Bridge

Looking back from Cat & Mutton Bridge

Barge dwelling cat

At Kingsland Rd Bridge

Looking west from Kingsland Rd Bridge

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Canal Dogs

16 Responses leave one →
  1. January 29, 2020

    Lovely! Living in Northamptonshire these days, I’m lucky enough to be able to visit both the Oxford and Grand Union canals. For a walker with a camera, there isn’t a more uplifting way to spend a couple of hours.

  2. Clay Hamer permalink
    January 29, 2020


  3. January 29, 2020

    Beautiful. Photos like these make me Londonsick. What wildlife did you see? I used to go to the climbing wall at Mile End a lot with my kids used to see mountains of terrapins, occasional herons, foxes,coots, moor hens and lots of those big water perching big skinny black primeval looking birds. Still laugh at a comment of my then 6 or 7 yr old son at the runners when we spotted some children doing it too, I said to him would you like to do that… he retorted no way, that’s child abuse,

  4. Antony Macer permalink
    January 29, 2020

    A coincidence! Until midnight last night, with an image from Google Maps on the screen, I was reading Bob Gilbert’s ‘The Kings Cross Cut – A city canal and its community’, published in July1985. Our local Civic Society visited the new Kings Cross development last year, and before the talk at the Wash Rooms last week, I took a look at parts of it that we hadn’t had time to properly look at. And now, I have some magnificent photos to make real the scene. Spot on!
    Things really have changed since 1985, though…

  5. January 29, 2020

    Greetings from Boston,

    GA, “it was my pleasure,” as you would say, to take the London Waterbus along the canal from the high end of “Little Venice” to the vibrancy of Camden Market on a lovely summer’s day a few years back. The boat was an interesting antique. Several folks disembarked half way to visit the London Zoo. Highly recommend this little excursion to folks visiting your fair city…

  6. Libby Hall permalink
    January 29, 2020

    Beautiful photographs!

    I got to go on a lovely surrogate walk in the crisp sunshine.

  7. January 29, 2020

    Wonderful. I wouldn’t mind living in one of those house on the canal. Lovely car, by the way.

  8. paul loften permalink
    January 29, 2020

    Thank you for these beautiful photos which convey a timeless sense of peace and relaxation. It certainly is a lovely walk that stimulates ideas and thought.

  9. Nick Borden permalink
    January 29, 2020

    I’m sitting here in a modest local cafe on columbus Ave, in Manhattan, thousands of miles away. Isn’t great at a click of a button can immediately taken back via the internet. I am stuck by these striking simple photographs of charming subjects.

  10. Eric Forward permalink
    January 29, 2020

    I’m lucky enough to live off Johnson Lock, so enjoy the pleasure of using the canal often, mainly down to Limehouse basin, but I’ve also cycled up to Islington and Camden via the canal. A couple of years ago I dropped myself off in the middle of Acton and decided to cycle back in from the west via the canal. However, I could not find any Boris bikes initially, as the area was not urbanised at all. It was a wonderful walk and you felt as though you could have been anywhere other than London, it was so quiet and country like. My understanding is that this area is earmarked as the next Stratford-scale development, so it would be well worth documenting. I bet in 10 years or so it is fully developed with canal-side living etc. A mile or two in and the residential area quickly built up. I was well behind schedule but enjoyed a lovely walk to Paddington, taking in the delights of Little Venice. This year I depart London, but I’ll make sure I complete that currently unknown stretch to me, from Paddington to Camden. Happy birthday Regents canal, here’s to the next 200 years!

  11. January 30, 2020

    In a crowded city, Regent’s Canal provides transport of course. But equally important are the moments of serenity it provides.

  12. January 30, 2020

    What Beautiful Pictures of the Canel!! I would love to walk along there!!????????

  13. Jennifer Blain permalink
    January 31, 2020

    I was surprised to see that the two lock-keeper’s houses (Johnson’s lock and Mile End) are larger and more generous than I would have expected. Is this a bit of canal one-upmanship, do you think? Do you know anything more about them?

  14. Lesley permalink
    February 9, 2020

    Lovely, to walk beside the water, all the interesting boats and people. Love this. Thank you.

  15. Lesley permalink
    February 9, 2020

    A walk in the morning
    I feel your quiet way
    The smooth passage you give
    I wander along

    The graffiti of anger smally detracts
    from the grafters who hungered
    Who built this long tract

    Memories are built by those who employ
    Wandering at dusk stepping out to enjoy

  16. DLG permalink
    February 11, 2020

    The lock keeper’s cottage at Mild End Road bridge is, fortunately, not being demolished to make way for the newly expanded school of business and management at Queen Mary University of London.

    However, an equally charming early 19th-century house next door to the cottage, at 375 Mile End Road, IS going to be demolished. It used to house the law faculty, and then was the college’s Arts Research Centre, but apparently 375 Mild End Road has to go because the noise from the Tube is too loud for students to concentrate (does the Tube really run that close to the canal, I wonder?).

    Universities are booming and business degrees are particularly valuable. The cynical part of me thinks that this harmless and relatively unspoiled little pocket of late Georgian/early Victorian London stands no chance in the face of commercial pressure (ok, greed).

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