London’s Royal Docks ‘just keeps changing’ – as a new outdoor show reveals


Chris Wiegand

Arrival, co-created with the local community, will take audiences on a journey around the historic industrial area set to welcome City Hall

When the mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, completes the relocation of City Hall HQ from Southwark to the Crystal building in the historic Royal Docks, he will become the latest to settle in an area synonymous with arrivals. This autumn, a new promenade theatre show is set to consider other inhabitants – from the past, present and future – of a region undergoing a major regeneration.

The production, named Arrival, is being co-created by the local community, working with directors Jon Bausor and Matthew Dunster. “It’s no accident that the mayor wants to align himself with this area – it’s an area of innovation,” says Dunster. Victoria Dock, which opened in 1855, was a technological feat itself and the show will consider the role of the docks in trade and industry through the products that have arrived there as well as the people.

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