Gravesend Town Pier

See ghostly ships from Gravesham’s past appear on the River Thames and watch ships from different eras of history pass by on their way to London.

Choose the Instagram or Facebook button below to open the AR experience.

Look out at the Thames via your camera feed to see ships from Gravesend past and present pass by.

This experience will open your camera feed. Turn your sound on to enjoy the full experience.



Erected in 1834 the pier is the oldest remaining cast iron pier in the world. Hundreds of important historical characters have embarked at this spot, including royalty, Cardinal Wolsey, Hogarth, John Wesley, and many more. The Town Pier (which was closed in 1969 when the passenger ferry was transferred to West Street Pier and the car ferry discontinued) was built in 1834 (designed by Tierney Clark, engineer, builder William Wood, cost £8700) and opened by the Earl of Darnley. Its construction was vigorously opposed by watermen of the period whose living depended to a large extent upon landing passengers from the steam vessels plying between Gravesend and London, and damage was caused to the early work undertaken to prepare for the building of the pier. The first steamboat on the Long Ferry was the Margery built on the Clyde by Wm. Denny of Dumbarton, in 1815, and they soon replaced the tilt boats used on the ferry since the 17th century when they in turn replaced the traditional barge.

Mono engraving of Gravesend Town Pier, Gravesham courtesy of Douglas Grierson