The anchor was removed ahead of the high street refurbishment and in response to lobbying by some people who blamed it for attracting street drinkers to the south end of the high street. Money from the Mayor's outer London fund was used to pay for the refurbishment that was carried out - here's how the top of the street was intended to look after the work.
And here's what's there now: shabby and useless street furniture, electric points and broken bollards.
An abandoned waymarker, still wrapped in its plywood coffin. Covered in fly posters and slowly rotting.
An empty space where a cafe kiosk/row of trees/symbolic anchor/all three could happily co-exist. Now providing parking for Asda trucks to unload their goods noisily at anti-social hours.
The former setting of the anchor, on a low plinth, made it attractive to street drinkers, and their presence was one of the reasons given for its removal. Now the drinkers gather in Giffin Square instead, next to the school and library.
Removing the anchor has swept away Deptford’s history, but the social issues persist. There is an empty space where the anchor once stood as a proud reminder of the Royal Dockyard.
Our anchor can be reinstated without a plinth. The landscape architect responsible for installing the anchor in 1988 has said the plinth is not essential. There are many examples of anchors without plinths across London and the UK.
Deptford began as a small fishing village and grew prosperous from its position on the river. The anchor serves as a reminder of the skills, industry, trade and international links so significant to the town’s history. We therefore demand that the Deptford Anchor is returned – without a plinth – to its rightful place, marking the gateway to the river where the town was born.
It's time for something different. Time to bring back the anchor.
Sign it here.