London has been a port since Roman times. It became an important trading city because of its links to the rest of the country over land and to the rest of the world through the river Thames. Roman galleys moored along the river trading a range of goods from around the Roman Empire. London continued to grow when the Romans left and the river became very busy.
Its object was to secure the regeneration of the London Docklands Urban Development Area (UDA) comprising 8½ square miles of East London in the Boroughs of Tower Hamlets, Newham and Southwark. This was a response to a huge decline in the economy of the area brought about by the progressive closure of the 1960s onwards.
Mass tree planting, clean, restored buildings, new green open space and access to the riverside and the former docks-the water parks have made a vast difference to living in Docklands. Although local communities may now take such change for granted, in 1981 people across Docklands had daily to withstand the depressing effect of dereliction, deserted rotting buildings and forbidding stretches of corrugated iron