An appeal has been launched for public donations to help finance a floating cycle path on the Thames in central London.

Its backer the River Cycleway Consortium has begun crowd-funding for the Thames Deckway planned to run eight miles off the south bank "between Battersea and Canary Wharf."

Any such scheme would need Port of London Authority approval but the PLA says it has had no talks or contact with the consortium.

The PLA said: “Any idea like this needs to take account of the practical realities of this fast flowing and very busy tidal River”.

And it expresses concerns about safety and congestion on one of the busiest stretches of the Thames.

The consortium, founded by architect David Nixon and entrepreneur Anna Hill, is aiming to raise an initial £175,000 of which £3,000 had been pledged by Monday (Nov 9th). Total cost would be £600 million.

A statement on the project's crowdfunding website says: "The Thames Deckway is a high-impact social and environmental enterprise that requires citizen engagement and support.

"We believe it can be built without any public financing. For this to succeed, we need your crowdfunding support to complete some vital steps."

It says: “A safe and scenic engineering marvel, the Deckway will run close to the embankments and away from the navigation channel, connecting with streets at bridges and major riverside destinations. The Thames Deckway will produce clean energy and breathe new life into London's river.”

The PLA said: “There is now a very strong consensus across decision makers at every level that the Thames should be further developed as a working river for both passengers and cargo.

“The Mayor’s  ‘River Action Plan’ aims to double commuter and tourist passenger numbers in the years ahead and cargo use of the river has more than doubled in the last five years.

“The placing of such a structure would reduce navigable space; increase congestion; and present a serious risk of collision.”

Details released by the consortium do not yet explain how the cycle path on the south bank will link with Canary Wharf of the north bank.

Surprisingly the Deckway fund-raising document says: “Sadly, the Thames today is ignored as a major traffic corridor.

“Its huge transportation capacity is used just by a handful of passenger craft, occasional garbage barges and not much else. Often there are no moving vessels of any kind as far as the eye can see.“

Backers say the deckway would host its own bicycle fleet offering infant carriages, child bicycles, tandems and tricycles and traffic density would be monitored by satellite.

It also says the deckway would generate energy “from combined solar, wind and tidal sources”.

Link to Thames Deckway website HERE

Link to crowdfunding website HERE

November 9th 2015