Walking the Gores Brook – Dagenham’s mythical river

A comment on a recent YouTube video alerted me to plans by Thames21 to uncover the section of the Gores Brook running beneath the ground in Parsloes Park where the river rises. Loving the eastern rivers as I do, this was a tantalising invitation.

Although culverted in the 1930s, the buried sections of the river in Parsloes Park are marked on my 1950s Geographia atlas. Also using manhole covers as a guide I followed the course of the buried river to the edge of the park before finding it running above ground in Goresbrook Park. This gentle stream then crosses beneath Ripple Road, and past Dagenham Asda where the 145 bus terminates.

1950s Map of Parsloes Park showing the Gores Brook
View of pylons at Dagenham east London
confluence of the Gores Brook and the Thames
confluence of the Gores Brook and the Thames

From here our riparian adventure plunges us into a dramatic post-industrial landscape created by the ghost of the Ford Motor Works at Dagenham as we walk along Chequers Road, crossing Dagenham Dock Station and passing beneath the A13 road. Turning into Choats Road, we once again meet the Gores Brook and follow footpath 47 to the point where the Gores Brook makes its confluence with the Thames at Horse Shoe Corner.


  1. Terry   •  

    Hi John, thanks for the great video. I’m a Dagenham boy and was postman there for 30 years. Now, I often wondered why why that part of Parsloes Park flooded in wet weather. I becomes almost a lake – ducks swimming around. Well, now I know! John, keep up the good work!

    • JohnR   •     Author

      Many thanks Terry

  2. anthony stabielli   •  

    love these walks ! feels like im on the walk without having to do the walking lol

    • JohnR   •     Author

      That’s great Anthony- thanks for watching

  3. Jennifer Levine   •  

    Just enjoyed a second viewing. This is truly a majestic walk!

    • JohnR   •     Author

      Thanks Jennifer- it’ll live long in the memory

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  5. Beverley   •  

    Although I watched and enjoyed your walk through Goresbrook Park and along the river, I have only just realised it was where my dad would have played during the war and if it would have been deep enough, where he learnt how to swim.

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