Friday, 4 November 2011

Tributaries to the Mayes Brook - Barking

Tributaries to the Mayes Brook
A network of drainage ditches and sewers ooze eastwards to the Mayesbrook and the River Roding


An area of marshland used in the 20th for the dumping of power station and other waste. There are numbers  of industrial and haulage works, and the residual buildings of the now demolished power station complex.  Likely to be developed for housing.

Post to the west River Road
Post to the south Barking Power Station site  and Thamesmead Pumping Station
Post to the east Barking Levels


Barking Levels
These were grazing marshes stretching towards the low-lying grasslands, intersected with dykes and protected by the sea walls. Much of it was used by industry, including the storage of coal and power station waste. From the mid 16th the Barking Levels were under the jurisdiction of a court of sewers between West Ham and – which includes Eastbury Marsh which is the area here. The area was previously owned by Barking Abbey and this was sold by the Crown. Each owner was responsible for a length of sea wall. In 1930 they came under the control of the Essex Rivers Catchment Board

Eastbury Levels
Pulverised Fly ash from the power station dumped throughout the area. This means that much of the area is three metres or more above the original level although much of the ash has been removed from some tips, leaving a pit. The ash has had a marked effect on the ecology of the marshes because it is the residue from coal burning, it is composed of calcium carbonate and silica, plus aluminium, iron oxide and other compounds, such as arsenic, selenium and, boron. Its highly alkaline nature of is favourable to plants associated with chalk down land, and slows the growth rate of trees and deep-rooted plants. There are also many species here typical of recently disturbed habitat like wormwood, field poppy and viper's bugloss. Some of these species are not native to Britain – some are evident "garden escapes". Members of the pea family are found some of them of alien to Britain.
Small flat area where toxic wastes may have been dumped
Coal store north of the power station.
Two ponds were there in the 1960s used for deposits of fly ash.

Estuary Close
New housing built on marshland

Great Fleet Estate
New housing built on marshland

Renwick Road
This was once called Ripple Lane. I was renamed after the designer of the power station. By 1961-62 there were steep embankments along the road
CEGB electrical switching station. Dates from 1964
Patch of rare Bermuda grass near the switching station
Cattle which were grazing on licence from the power station

Thames Road
Flood storage channel runs alongside it parallel to the north
Trading estates and industrial units
Riverside Industrial Estate
Oasis Banqueting Hall
21 Victorious Faith Assembly
23 Living Faith Connections

City Farm opened 1986 closed bankrupt 2008

Sources
Barking and Dagenham Nature Conservation Report

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