The Red Scotch Derrick Crane in Odessa Street is now under threat from developers seemingly working with Southwark Council’s support. This old docklands crane is the last one remaining in Rotherhithe and was left standing as part of the London Docklands Development Corperation’s commitment to preserving some of the dockland heritage of the area. Rotherhithe was a major importer of Scandinavian Timber. The links with Scandinavia still exist with the Norwegian and Finnish Churches being based here. This rare crane was used to unload timber to nearby yards. It seems that Southwark Council has a policy to let these wonderful pieces of heritage go into dereliction and then state they are unsafe so that the land can be cleared to line the pockets of developers. The links between the developers and the council employees is uncomfortably close.
The council has been running down South Dock Boat Yard for many years so that they can smother it with high rise tower blocks. All around there are signs of a basic lack of maintenance of the historic docklands artefacts presumably with a view for future demolition and profitable development.
There is a petition to help save the Red Scotch Derrick Crane at http://tinyurl.com/z8o8ofa, or via the full web address which is http://moderngov.southwark.gov.uk/mgEPetitionDisplay.aspx?ID=500000030&RPID=614088535&HPID=614088535.
If the petition gets more than 500 signatures, Southwark council have to respond.
Please sign it so they are forced to reconsider this act of vandalism and please forward this to anyone else that you might know who cares for the heritage of the area.
Sadly the crane has now gone and been replaced by the inevitable block of flats. There is no mention of the beautiful crane. Such a shame, the Thames Path has got so much duller. On a more positive note, the bridge over Greenland Dock has been repaired and is enjoyed by many walkers every day.