|James Latham Woodyard on the Lea in Hackney|
This is the Latham Woodyard photographed by me some time in June 1985. It looks fairly benign and actually used the Lea in what many would regard as an environmentally friendly way, running regular barges along it.
Many would attempt to revise this practice and they may have got grants, but the barges have not re-appeared.
In reality when Lathams was operating the Lea was a dead, dark stretch of water, heavily polluted by diesel. This is what Les Heath, who ran for 50 years the Anchor & Hope, probably the most famous pub on the Lea towpath, had to say about the Lea in those days. You have to watch until about 8 mins 20 seconds before you get to him talking about the Lea, but it's worth waiting for.
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