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The working river

Landing tapioca at Butler's Wharf
The Thames has always been a working river. Trade and industry flourished as the port grew. A huge labour force worked in maritime London. Today, Docklands remains a centre of the global trade in commodities and finance.
Docks and shipping
London was Britain's biggest and busiest port. Its docks handled goods from around the world and for centuries the city was also an important shipbuilding centre.

Trades, industries and institutions
Maritime London was a huge and busy port and a vast industrial centre. Many shipyards, factories and power stations lined the banks of the Thames.

Science and discovery
The shipyards and engineering works along the Thames were centres of excellence and technical innovation. London was also the point of departure for many important voyages of scientific exploration and discovery around the world.

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Port Fact
Why were bird droppings and animal blood used in Silvertown?

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National Maritime Museum/Royal Observatory Greenwich New Opportunities Fund  
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