MBNA Thames Clippers trials commuter river bus service

New service from Gravesend to London

MBNA Thames Clippers will trial a new commuter river bus service that will take commuters from Gravesend Town Centre to Central London next month.

The trial will take place between 11 and 14 September and will be free to use but commuters will need to pre-book online. The aim is to assess the level of demand in the area.

From Monday to Thursday, there will be a morning service that departs Gravesend Town Pier at 07.15. It will then call at Canary Wharf Pier at 08.03, Tower Pier at 08.13, Blackfriars Pier at 08.19, and Embankment Pier at 08.25 its final destination.

In the evenings, the boat will depart Embankment Pier at 17.40 and will then call at Blackfriars Pier at 17.46, Tower Pier at 17.52, Canary Wharf Pier at 18.02, and arrive at Gravesend Town Pier at 18.50.

“We are committed to growing the river bus network in London and further east throughout the port,” said Sean Collins, MBNA Thames Clippers CEO. 

“We want as many commuters as possible to realise the huge benefits in terms of speed, comfort and frequency of travelling by river in London.

“We are optimistic about the volume of customers opting to trial the new service and hope to soon be able to offer Gravesend even greater transport links permanently.”

The commuter boats already operate on a number of routes including between Putney in the west and North Greenwich in the east.

The trial comes as MBNA Thames Clippers’ grow their river transport network across the capital following the recent launch of the Mercury Clipper, one of two new passenger boats.

Cabinet Member for Business Development, Cllr Samir Jassal, said: “It’s really great that the service is coming down to Gravesend. MBNA Thames Clippers will offer many benefits that the train direct into London cannot.

‘The vessel has on-board facilities such as an outdoor seated deck, toilets, a coffee bar and access to daily newspapers. There’s a lot happening in the Gravesend part of the River Thames and it’s our ambition that we can do more in the future. If this trial is a success then we’d love to be able to work with MBNA Thames Clippers to offer this service continually.”

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