DC Casebook: Leisure and tourism - Riverside activity held to enhance setting

Private moorings have been allowed on the River Thames near Hammersmith Bridge after an inspector observed that boating activity is intrinsic to the character of the area.

The proposal involved a pontoon close to a pair of listed early 17th century cottages in a conservation area. The inspector reasoned that the pontoon and a wall ladder would clearly achieve more use of the river and its foreshore. He saw no requirement to impose solely public access and concluded that the scheme was acceptable in principle.

He noted that gravel deposits on a river bend made it suitable to beach boats. The cottages had also been occupied during the 19th and most of the 20th century by the same family of watermen. Photographs from 100 years ago showed a landing stage and more recent photographs showed rafts.

The inspector accepted that moorings were a well-established part of the river scene. He considered that the scheme would strengthen the structure of the foreshore in the immediate vicinity, where further riverside activity would contribute to the quality of the area. He was satisfied that changes to the foreshore would not impact significantly on protected habitats or species.

DCS Number 100-069-594

Inspector Roger Mather; Written representations.

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