Historical photos of E15 & E20 area - Please contribute if you can


Thanks @Oat44 / @Nick_Lane / @Lee. Really interesting info! We should get Diamondgeezer on Yonder!!
And… I guess to a large extent the history of this area is the history of the canals and waterways. So thanks for that book - Ordered from Amazon.


Hi @isaac_layish, just to clarify, the book is fascinating but only features the lost rivers that have been sent down various conduits and pipes over the years: the Westbourne, Tyburn, Fleet etc. I hope you enjoy reading it though.

I put a link to this thread on DiamondGeezer’s webpage when I first set it up so they are aware of it…


Hey everyone, I’ve been doing a bit of searching and have found some pictures I took on an Olympic site tour on 20th September 2008.

I have posted a selection below and where possible, said where I think they are:

The photo above is the Stadium under construction from the south side.

Above shows how much they built up the area as the concrete level (supported by posts) is the level you now enter the stadium at

Below are a couple of waterway views:

Looking north with Carpenter’s Lock going off to the left (I think)

Looking south with Stratford Waterfront to your left what will become the Aquatics Centre beyond the bend in the river (again I think…)

Looking north with the development of Stadium Island on your left

Millions of tones of soil on site needed to be washed clean of impurities such as heavy metals and chemicals that have been left behind following centuries of industry based on the site. The following photo shows what is to all intents and purposes a giant soil washing machine:

I don’t think they bought this particular model from the white goods department of John Lewis (colour aside)…

The photo below is the site of the Aquatics Centre.

To follow is a photo of Stratford International Station with Westfield rising from the soil behind and Stratford Town Centre in the background.

For so long it seemed that all they were doing was shoving piles of soil around. The plles below were rather small ones in comparison to some of the soil mountains that existed at one point. I think the next view is part of the northern area of the Olympic Park:

Finally I’ll leave you with 3 general views, ending with a view of what is now the covered part of the Westfield Shopping Centre:

That’s all folks!


I’m really excited. I was going through some photos and found an aerial photo my Dad took (he’s an aerial and site photographer) back in around 1995/96. It’s partially of Stratford station, Stratford High Street and what is now the Olympic site. Quite fun playing spot the difference. Things to look out for:

No Jubilee line depot or Jubilee Line
Old car park where there is now the new Stratford bus station
Obvious changes within the rail lands
All the new builds along Stratford High Street
The big building beside the Greenway (now a storage yard and going to become housing and a school I think)

Anyway, hope you like it. Please credit “Philip Lane Photography” if you use it anywhere else. Many thanks:


I took these pictures back in 2005. What you see is the area between what is now the View Tube and Pudding Mill Lane DLR station.


And this was in 2006.

Welcome Topic - introduce yourself

This is excellent!! :blush:


Thanks @Falco, what a great set of photos. You really captured the essence of what it was like back then. The tyres, the narrow alleyways, the piles of rubbish, the old cars. Back then it seemed almost a pipe dream to consider the area resembling anything like what it does today! Love the fox photo as well.


Here’s an interesting aerial my dad took on 3rd May 2001.

Stadium Island is in the foreground (bottom right of the picture) - the waterways and railways help to get orientated. Happy for you to share this if you wish but please credit ‘Philip Lane Photography’.


That’s is a fascinating shot. It shows much better than google Earth’s time machine what it was like pre HS1. Best of all I can just make out my house.


Yes, mine’s in there as well although a speck of dust on the camera lense would have obliterated it!



What a wonderful aerial! Thank you for sharing it.

I’ve tried to add some of today’s landmarks to it,
but I fear I might not be very good at it.
(I had to make a major correction for the Aquatics Centre)


Also, I would like to share this website (with very interesting photos) with you:

Note the various references to and pictures of the nuclear research reactor (QMC/QMUL).
You can still find it on old maps. Now the stadium (under which Pudding Mill River and Marshgate Lane are buried) is on top of it.


Thanks for sharing your notes @Falco - great stuff! :slight_smile:


Like it. The only thing I would point out, being the alcoholic I am, is the Eagle is further up Angel Lane/Leyton Road, nearer that triangular green patch, and the pub circled is the Railway Tavern, I believe. :grinning:


That london canals is a good read too. Never knew about the ‘Nuclear Facility’ either, superb!



You’re absolutely right!
It’s indeed the Railway Tavern - not The Eagle.
Thanks for making me (and everybody else) aware of this.
I have now changed it on the photo.


…and for thos who enjoy playing around with Google Earth:

compare this (current situation) and this (during building works).

Remarkable, isn’t it :smiley:

By the way, this very pond is, in my view, one of the two remains of the Cannelsea River;
the other being this one.


That’s great, thanks @Falco, some really interesting links and valuable annotations on the picture. The Pudding Mill River article has made me realise what I was looking at when I used to see a little overgrown inlet on what is now Stadium Island. I thought it was a backwater, I didn’t realise it was once a thriving waterway! Fascinating.


The culverted route of the Channelsea river must take quite an odd meandering route - at the bottom of the water glades it appears to run north/East, it then briefly re-appears alongside the Jubilee Line at Stratford Station, emerging at the other end much further south, by Abbey Mills, joining the Lea again at Three Mills.