History of Canary Wharf

History of

Canary Wharf

Canary Wharf, previously known as West India Docks was constructed by a wealthy businessman Robert Milligan had returned to London after the management of his family’s sugar plantations in Jamaica. Milton was infuriated by the losses suffered by businessmen at the wharves in London’s riverside because of theft and delays Milligan and several other rich and powerful businessmen decided to make a wet wharf surrounded by a high wall to prevent these losses. Accordingly, this group planned and built West India Docks and the group influenced Parliament to allow them to create a West India Dock Company to serve their business interests.

The permission to construct the docks was authorized by Parliament by the West India Dock Act of 1799, which was the first parliamentary Act for Dock building. Construction of the docks was carried out in two separate phases between 1800 and 1802, and the docks were inaugurated on August 27th, 1802. The British Prime Minister at that time William Pitts laid the foundation stone of the docks. The opening was performed by pulling in the ship ‘Henry Addington’ with ropes to formally start operations at the docks. This was followed by Echo, a ship that had arrived with cargo from the West Indies.

During the following 21 years all vessels were obligated to use the West India docks by an article passed by Parliament, which financed the docks till completion. The South West India Dock was constructed to replace a loss giving canal which was built by City of London Corporation and later taken over the company. In 1909 administration of the docks was transferred to by the Port of London Authority, along with other docks. Canary Wharf houses many of very large businesses that include international finance, and literally every types of business. Around 300,000 people also live at Canary Wharf, and it has its share of theaters, museums, and centers for other cultural activities.

Canary Wharf has a diverse monetary layout for its trade and industry which encompasses a wide range of economic activities which include legal and advertising firms and other service industries. Canary Wharf is one of London’s major business districts and also a very important financial center, with some of the highest buildings in London. It is located in the West India Docks on the Isle of Dogs in the Municipality of Tower Hamlets (small villages) in East London.  The distinguishing feature of Canary Wharf is that the second tallest and the tallest building in England are both located at here. The headquarters of many major banks, such as Barclays, Citigroup, Clifford, Credit Suisse, HSBC, J.P. Morgan, KPMG, MetLife, Morgan Stanley, Skadden and media groups and other multinationals are all located at Canary Wharf.