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RAD hosts family day at Compressor House to celebrate local history

This week scores of residents from across the Royal Docks and beyond were able to step into the past after the historic Compressor House at RAD opened its doors to the public.

The event was hosted in partnership with the Museum of London Docklands, and included a host of activities for the local community to learn about the history of the local area and its transformation into one of London’s most exciting mixed-use neighbourhoods.

Compressor House was once a cold storage facility specifically for meats that would arrive into or depart from the surrounding dockyards. Built in 1914, the building had a specially designed roof filled with water to help with the refrigeration of meat. It was later disused in the 1970s, when much of the area declined as a result of newer, preferred routes for cargo operators.

The Royal Docks was closed entirely by the Port of London Authority in December 1981 but has since rebounded into an exciting destination for thousands of new residents and businesses as well as the existing community.

The dockyards are also experiencing a rebirth, with Peruvian Wharf reopening last month after 20 years of being in disuse. The wharf welcomed its first cargo last week – a shipment of 2,150 tonnes of sand – and is expected to handle more than 400,000 tonnes of cargo each year.

“This was an excellent opportunity for RAD to both showcase a local landmark as well as bring together residents and visitors for a history lesson on the Royal Docks,” said John Miu, Chief Operating Officer of ABP London.

“RAD is proud to be playing a part in the area’s transformation, and we look forward to continuing to strengthen our community with more events that celebrate our culture.”

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© Museum of London

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© Museum of London

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© Museum of London

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© Museum of London

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