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Whose River? London and the Thames Estuary, 1960-2014

Whose River? London and the Thames Estuary, 1960-2014

Taylor, Vanessa ORCID: 0000-0003-3639-7460 (2015) Whose River? London and the Thames Estuary, 1960-2014. The London Journal, 40 (3). pp. 244-271. ISSN 0305-8034 (Print), 1749-6322 (Online) (doi:

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This article investigates London's relationship with its neighbours downstream in the lower Thames estuary since 1960 as a problem of governance. It considers in detail tensions and rivalries amongst London-based authorities controlling pollution and waste transfer – especially the Port of London Authority, the London County Council and Greater London Council – and authorities and civil society groups in the lower estuary during the 1960s and 1970s. In the light of connections between the river's management and its dominant functions – the port and sewerage – at the start of this period, it explores changing forms of governance and wider political debates during three phases: an era of function-led management and environmental degradation of the tidal Thames up to the 1960s; political and environmental conflicts in the 1970s over metropolitan attempts to expand into riverside areas downstream; reform of river and water governance since the 1970s and 1980s with the emergence of river-basin management, privatization and the EU's regulatory environmentalism.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Urban rivers; Ports; Estuary; Environment; Governance; London; Thames
Faculty / School / Research Centre / Research Group: Faculty of Liberal Arts & Sciences
Faculty of Liberal Arts & Sciences > School of Humanities & Social Sciences (HSS)
Last Modified: 13 Dec 2020 00:52

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