Hidden Waterways

The Lea RIVER & Lee Navigation, London, U.K.

In the 19th century, much of London's Lea River was converted to a canal, Lee Navigation. This enabled boats to reach immigrant neighborhoods in London where finished goods were made from raw materials. Today, most industry is gone, leaving derelict areas where algae, weeds, and wildflowers have gained a foothold. The 2012 Summer Olympics were a catalyst for restoration. Riverbanks were converted to housing and recreational assets for athletes and residents. The photographer was able to capture on film many of these areas before reconstruction began. In the aftermath of the Olympics, riverside condominiums and apartments are booming. Tourists are renting canal boats. And pubs are sprouting up where factories once spewed smoke into the air. The Lea Valley is advancing towards a post-industrial, garden-like future.


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Hidden Waterways