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London Gardens Online


Grand Union Canal (Hammersmith section) Hammersmith & Fulham


The Grand Union Canal was built in 1800 to extend the existing Grand Junction Canal, which ran to Brentford, with central London. The land for the Hammersmith stretch of the canal was purchased in 1799 from the Bishop of London. The canal was in use for transporting goods until the early C20th and now provides a green corridor with recreational facilities along the towpath.

Basic Details

Site location:
Access from Old Oak Lane, Scrubs Lane

NW10 ( Google Map)

Type of site:
Public Open Land

1800; C20th


Listed structures:

Hammersmith & Fulham

Site ownership:
Canal & River Trust

Site management:
LB Hammersmith & Fulham management of canal towpath in the borough

Open to public?

Opening times:

Special conditions:


Events organised by Canal & River Trust - see website

Public transport:
London Overground/Tube (Bakerloo): Willesden Junction then bus. Tube: North Acton (Central) then bus. Bus: 220, 266.

The information shown above was correct at the time of the last update 01/07/2012
Please check with the site owner or manager for latest news.

Further Information

Grid ref:
TQ215825 (west)/230823 (east)

Size in hectares:

Green Flag:

On EH National Register :

EH grade:

Site on EH Heritage at Risk list:

Registered common or village green on Commons Registration Act 1965:

Protected under London Squares Preservation Act 1931:

Local Authority Data

The information below is taken from the relevant Local Authority's planning legislation, which was correct at the time of research but may have been amended in the interim. Please check with the Local Authority for latest planning information.

On Local List:

In Conservation Area:

Conservation Area name:
Grand Union Canal

Tree Preservation Order:

Nature Conservation Area:
Yes - Metropolitan Importance

Green Belt:

Metropolitan Open Land:

Special Policy Area:

Other LA designation:
Site 84 Old Oak Common Sidings EN 27 Nature Conservation

Fuller information

The Grand Union Canal was built in 1800, originally called the Paddington Canal, in order to extend the existing Grand Junction Canal, which ran to Brentford, with central London. The land through which the Canal was cut in Hammersmith was purchased from the Bishop of London in 1799, after much negotiation by the Chelsea Waterworks Co. The new canal was in use until the early C20th when its importance for transporting goods was superseded by other forms of transport. The section in the borough runs just east of the Hythe Road footbridge to the aqueduct over Counter’s Creek, a stretch of 1.3 km, divided by Mitre Bridge taking Scrub Lane over the canal. The towing path runs along the south side of the canal. The grass is kept short and the hedges are trimmed. Seats and waste paper bins are provided. At the point where the canal crosses Counter’s Creek there is an area with seats and picnic tables, with a small pond at this point. Landscaping has been carried out by the London Wildlife Trust and also Hammersmith and Fulham Amenity Trust and it is an important area for ecology.

On 2 July 2012, British Waterways ceased to exist in England and Wales and in its place the Canal & River Trust was set up to care for 2,000 miles of historic waterways.

Sources consulted:

John Archer, Daniel Keech 'Nature Conservation in Hammersmith & Fulham', Ecology Handbook 25, London Ecology Unit, 1993

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