The Blackwall Tunnel is closing for two weekends in July and August

While we might currently be seeing a temporary pause in train strikes in London, that’s by no means the end of travel disruption in the capital. The next huge shake-up to getting around the capital will be the partial closure of the Blackwall tunnel, one of London’s busiest river crossings, which will close for two weekends – starting at the end of this month. 

TfL has confirmed the planned closure of the southbound Blackwall tunnel for two weekends across July and August, which is due preparations for the new Silvertown tunnel crossing. The crossing will still be open northbound, though that traffic will be routed through the tunnel usually used for southbound traffic. Slightly confusing, we know.

The northbound tunnel has already closed several times this year: this time it’ll be getting roads resurfaced and safety barriers installed. The road layout is also being completed to support the new Silvertown tunnel, which is due to open next year.

So, which dates do regular Blackwall tunnel users need to watch out for? Well, that’d be: July 20-22 and August 17-19.

The tunnel will be shut southbound between 12.01am on Saturday morning and 5am (at the latest) on the following Monday morning. 

Alternative nearby route options include the M24 Dartford Crossing, Tower Bridge and the Rotherhithe tunnel (which could close itself later this year), though drivers of HGVs as well as vans of higher than two metres tall are encouraged to avoid central London during these periods and beware of size restrictions. 

The 108 bus route, the only one which operates through the tunnel, will be temporarily split in two when the tunnel is partially closed, operating between Lewisham and North Greenwich and between Canning Town and Stratford. Passengers will have to instead use the Jubilee line to get across the river, though will be automatically refunded for this part of the journey. 

So, quite a big reshuffle for traffic around the Blackwall tunnel! You can check for regular traffic updates in the area on the TfL website here.

This isn’t the only time that the Blackwall tunnel has been in Time Out news in recent months. Last year it was announced that the tunnel will begin charging a toll fee in 2025, which is when the Silvertown tunnel is also set to open. Because the Silvertown will also charge a fee, the Blackwall toll is apparently intended to encourage drivers to use both crossings.  

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