Boat journeys on the Thames in London rose to a record 8.5 million last year thanks in part to tourists taking advantage of the fine summer.

The number of journeys increased by two million on the previous year with commuter trips up by 20 per cent. The Mayor has a target of 12 million passengers by 2020.

New piers are planned with Battersea Power Station and Plantation Wharf due to open later this year and extension work at three central London piers - Bankside, Embankment and Westminster. Piers at Convoys Wharf in Deptford, Enderby Wharf in Greenwich and the western side of North Greenwich Peninsula are also planned.

The Putney to Blackfriars River Bus service has seen a 130 per cent increase in passenger numbers since its re-launch in April 2013. An additional two morning and three evening sailings have been introduced.  

Mayor  Boris Johnson, said: “The River Thames plays an integral role as both a key artery for commuters and a wonderful avenue for tourists too. That is why I am delighted that a record number of passengers used the river last year, benefitting from our clearer timetables and improved routes.

"We are nevertheless looking to the future with plans to build further new piers and to expand existing facilities, remaining on course to reach 12 million passengers travelling on the Thames by 2020.”

Story dated March 5th 2014

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