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LONDON is the largest urban area and capital city of the United Kingdom , located in southeastern Great Britain
Great Britain
. The London
London
region covers an area of 1,579 square kilometres (610 sq mi), and had a population of 7,172,036 in 2001 and a population density of 4,542 people per square kilometre. A larger area, referred to as the London Metropolitan Region or the London
London
Metropolitan Agglomeration covers an area of 8,382 square kilometres (3,236 sq mi), and had a population of 12,653,500 and a population density of 1,510 people per square kilometre.

London
London
is a port on the Thames
Thames
(see main article Port
Port
of London
London
), a navigable river. The river has had a major influence on the development of the city. London
London
began on the Thames' north bank and for a long time the main focus of the city remained on the north side of the Thames. For many centuries London
London
Bridge was the only bridge in or close to the city. When more bridges were built in the 18th century, the city expanded in all directions as the mostly flat or gently rolling countryside presented no obstacle to growth.

CONTENTS

* 1 360 degree panorama

* 2 Rivers and canals

* 2.1 River Thames
Thames
* 2.2 Left bank tributaries * 2.3 Right-bank tributaries

* 2.4 Canals

* 2.4.1 North of the Thames
Thames
* 2.4.2 South of the Thames
Thames

* 2.5 Islands in the Thames
Thames

* 3 Topography

* 3.1 The hills in the city of London
London
* 3.2 North London
London

* 4 Climate * 5 See also * 6 References

360 DEGREE PANORAMA

A panorama of modern London, taken from the Golden Gallery of Saint Paul's Cathedral

RIVERS AND CANALS

RIVER THAMES

The River Thames
Thames
is by far the largest river of the London
London
(place) area, flowing west to east across the London
London
Basin . It is rather larger than would be expected if it only drained the basin, since its headwaters cut into the London
London
basin through the Goring Gap and also drain parts of the Cotswolds and Vale of Aylesbury . Similarly tributaries such as the Mole cut through the North Downs into the basin from the south. Further downstream the flow of the Thames
Thames
is boosted by springs which open onto the riverbed where this is on chalk.

The Thames
Thames
was once a much broader, shallower river than it is today. It has been extensively embanked. The Thames
Thames
is tidal (the Tideway ) up to Teddington Lock , and London
London
is vulnerable to flooding by storm surges . The threat has increased over time due to a slow but continuous rise in high water level, caused by both the slow 'tilting' of Britain (up in the north and down in the south) caused by post-glacial rebound and the gradual rise in sea levels due to climate change. The Thames
Thames
Barrier was constructed across the Thames
Thames
at Woolwich
Woolwich
in the 1970s to deal with this threat, but in early 2005 it was suggested that a ten mile long barrier further downstream might be required to deal with the flood risk in the future.

Within London
London
a considerable number of rivers and streams flow into the Thames, some large enough to have exerted a significant influence on the geography of the area. Many of the smaller London
London
tributaries now flow underground .

LEFT BANK TRIBUTARIES

Larger left bank tributaries include the Colne , Crane , Brent , Lea (tidal reach known as 'Bow Creek '), Roding (tidal reach known as ' Barking Creek '), Rom (lower reaches known as the Beam) and Ingrebourne . There are many smaller, now often largely subterranean streams including Stamford Brook , Counter\'s Creek (also known as 'Chelsea Creek'), Westbourne , Tyburn , Tyburn Brook , Fleet and Walbrook . Some of the tributaries are themselves large enough to have named tributary streams, for example the Moselle , Salmons Brook and Pymmes Brook that feed the Lea, and the Silk Stream
Silk Stream
and Dollis Brook that feed the Brent.

Larger rivers such as the Lea have influenced local geography in several ways. Firstly a river and its marshland formed a significant barrier to east-west movement - the Lea formed a natural boundary between the historic areas of Middlesex
Middlesex
and Essex
Essex
. Secondly the valley of the Lea formed a route - both the river and later Lee Navigation , and roads including the Roman Ermine Street
Ermine Street
, the Hertford Road (A1010) and the later Great Cambridge Road (A10) and A1055. The Lea Valley is also followed by two routes of what became the Great Eastern Railway and had important marshalling yards and locomotive works at Temple Mills
Temple Mills
. Thirdly the river provided power for numerous water mills - well known examples being the Royal Small Arms Factory at Enfield and nearby Waltham Abbey Royal Gunpowder Mills , Wright\'s Flour Mill (London's last surviving working mill) at Ponders End and the Three Mills
Three Mills
at Stratford. In the 19th Century the lower Lea became an important area for the manufacture of chemicals, in part based on the supply of by-products such as sulphur and ammonia from the Gas Light and Coke Company 's works at Bow Common. In the 20th Century the combination of transport, wide expanses of flat land and electricity from riverside and canalside plants such as Brimsdown , Hackney , Bow and West Ham led to expansion of industries including for example Enfield Rolling Mills and Enfield Cables , Thorn Electrical Industries , Belling, Glover and Main , MK Electric , Gestetner , JAP Industries , etc. Much industry has now gone, to be replaced by warehousing and retail parks.

The valley also became very important for London's water supply, as the source of the water transported by the New River aqueduct, but also as the location for the Lee Valley Reservoir Chain , stretching from Enfield through Tottenham
Tottenham
and Walthamstow
Walthamstow
.

A second significant corridor of canal, railways and industries was associated with the Brent , stretching from the Thames
Thames
at Brentford
Brentford
, through Isleworth
Isleworth
, Greenford , Alperton and Park Royal .

The Colne (the historic boundary between Middlesex
Middlesex
and Buckinghamshire ) forms much of the western boundary of the county of Greater London.

RIGHT-BANK TRIBUTARIES

Significant tributaries include the Mole , Wandle , Ravensbourne (tidal reach known as ' Deptford Creek ') with its tributary the Quaggy , and the Darent and its tributary the Cray which together form part of the eastern boundary of Greater London. Smaller, some mainly subterranean tributaries include the Hogsmill River
Hogsmill River
, Beverley Brook , Neckinger and Effra .

The Wandle formed south London's nearest equivalent to the Lea Valley, with an industrial corridor stretching from the Thames
Thames
at Wandsworth through Merton and Mitcham to Beddington and Croydon
Croydon
. A smaller corridor followed the Ravensbourne from the Thames
Thames
at Deptford Creek through Lewisham , and many of the smaller rivers also once had mills.

CANALS

A number of canals or canalised rivers have been constructed in the London
London
area, mostly in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. These were originally for goods traffic, which has largely ceased. Within London
London
the canals carried coal from the docks to many canal-side gas works and power stations (for example Brimsdown ), and timber to timber yards, furniture manufacturers etc. (for example in Edmonton ). Although most of the canals still survive today, they are used primarily for leisure craft.

North Of The Thames

Canal construction in the London
London
area started with navigation works on the Lea and Stort from 1424 onwards, leading to the River Lee Navigation and Bow Back Rivers . Initially used for transport of agricultural product from Hertfordshire , this later became an important industrial waterway connecting the heavily industrialised Lea Valley with the docks . A short-cut to the Thames
Thames
avoiding the winding mouth of the Lea (Bow Creek ) and closer to central London
London
was provided by the Limehouse Cut
Limehouse Cut
(1760).

A connection from London
London
to the Midlands had been provided by the Oxford Canal
Oxford Canal
since 1790, but this required navigation up the winding the upper Thames
Thames
to Oxford
Oxford
. The completion of the Grand Junction Canal (later Grand Union ) from the Thames
Thames
at Brentford
Brentford
(1798 onwards) provided a more convenient route. In 1801 an arm was opened from the Grand Junction at Hayes to a large basin at Paddington . This was later linked to the Thames
Thames
at Limehouse
Limehouse
(close to the Limehouse
Limehouse
Cut) by the Regent\'s Canal , completed in 1820. This in turn was linked to the Lea system by the Hertford Union Canal or Hackney Cut (1830). The Regent's Canal
Regent's Canal
had many substantial basins ( City Road Basin , Kingsland Basin , Battlebridge Basin , St Pancras Basin , Cumberland Basin etc.), originally lined with industries dependent on traffic from the docks.

The City Canal (1805) was built to provide a short-cut across the Isle of Dogs
Isle of Dogs
. This was later incorporated into the West India Docks and is no longer connected to the Thames
Thames
at its upstream end. Other short canals connecting to the Thames
Thames
included the Grosvenor Canal (1825) and the Kensington Canal
Kensington Canal
(1828).

South Of The Thames

The former Grand Surrey Canal
Grand Surrey Canal
(1807) was intended to run from the Thames
Thames
at Rotherhithe to the industrial town of Mitcham , but got no further than Camberwell . It closed with the Surrey Commercial Docks in 1970 and has been filled. The Grand Surrey Canal
Grand Surrey Canal
linked to the Croydon
Croydon
Canal (1809) which continued as far as West Croydon
Croydon
; this closed in 1836.

Further afield a link from London
London
to Bristol
Bristol
is provided by the Kennet color:#000000;">16.0 (60.8) 18.6 (65.5) 22.8 (73) 27.4 (81.3) 31.8 (89.2) 34.8 (94.6) 36.7 (98.1) 37.9 (100.2) 31.3 (88.3) 28.8 (83.8) 18.6 (65.5) 16.6 (61.9) 37.9 (100.2)

AVERAGE HIGH °C (°F) 8.1 (46.6) 8.4 (47.1) 11.3 (52.3) 14.2 (57.6) 17.9 (64.2) 21.0 (69.8) 23.5 (74.3) 23.2 (73.8) 19.9 (67.8) 15.5 (59.9) 11.1 (52) 8.3 (46.9) 15.2 (59.4)

AVERAGE LOW °C (°F) 2.3 (36.1) 2.1 (35.8) 3.9 (39) 5.5 (41.9) 8.7 (47.7) 11.7 (53.1) 13.9 (57) 13.7 (56.7) 11.4 (52.5) 8.4 (47.1) 4.9 (40.8) 2.7 (36.9) 7.5 (45.5)

RECORD LOW °C (°F) −13.2 (8.2) −9.6 (14.7) −5.1 (22.8) −2.6 (27.3) −0.9 (30.4) 1.5 (34.7) 5.6 (42.1) 5.9 (42.6) 1.8 (35.2) −3.3 (26.1) −7 (19) −11.8 (10.8) −13.2 (8.2)

AVERAGE PRECIPITATION MM (INCHES) 55.2 (2.173) 40.9 (1.61) 41.6 (1.638) 43.7 (1.72) 49.4 (1.945) 45.1 (1.776) 44.5 (1.752) 49.5 (1.949) 49.1 (1.933) 68.5 (2.697) 59.0 (2.323) 55.2 (2.173) 601.7 (23.689)

MEAN MONTHLY SUNSHINE HOURS 61.5 77.9 114.6 168.7 198.5 204.3 212.0 204.7 149.3 116.5 72.6 52.0 1,632.6

Source #1: Met Office

Source #2: KNMI

Kew
Kew
- Weather station in the South West part of London, adjacent to the River Thames.

CLIMATE DATA FOR KEW, 5M ASL, 1981-2010, EXTREMES 1901-

MONTH JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC YEAR

RECORD HIGH °C (°F) 16.1 (61) 18.5 (65.3) 22.0 (71.6) 26.7 (80.1) 30.6 (87.1) 34.2 (93.6) 35.0 (95) 38.1 (100.6) 33.3 (91.9) 27.8 (82) 18.9 (66) 15.7 (60.3) 38.1 (100.6)

AVERAGE HIGH °C (°F) 8.2 (46.8) 8.7 (47.7) 11.6 (52.9) 14.4 (57.9) 18.0 (64.4) 21.0 (69.8) 23.5 (74.3) 23.2 (73.8) 20.0 (68) 15.8 (60.4) 11.3 (52.3) 8.5 (47.3) 15.4 (59.7)

AVERAGE LOW °C (°F) 1.8 (35.2) 1.7 (35.1) 3.4 (38.1) 4.7 (40.5) 7.9 (46.2) 10.8 (51.4) 13.0 (55.4) 12.7 (54.9) 10.3 (50.5) 7.4 (45.3) 4.1 (39.4) 2.1 (35.8) 6.7 (44.1)

RECORD LOW °C (°F) −12.8 (9) −11.7 (10.9) −8.3 (17.1) −2.1 (28.2) −3.1 (26.4) −0.6 (30.9) 3.9 (39) 2.1 (35.8) 1.4 (34.5) −3.9 (25) −7.1 (19.2) −11.7 (10.9) −12.8 (9)

AVERAGE PRECIPITATION MM (INCHES) 57.2 (2.252) 41.9 (1.65) 42.8 (1.685) 45.3 (1.783) 48.8 (1.921) 49.3 (1.941) 46.8 (1.843) 51.2 (2.016) 52.2 (2.055) 69.7 (2.744) 60.6 (2.386) 56.6 (2.228) 622.5 (24.508)

MEAN MONTHLY SUNSHINE HOURS 59.8 79.9 118.2 173.3 205.3 203.6 218.4 211.1 146.4 117.2 70.6 49.6 1,653.4

Source: Met Office

Hampstead
Hampstead
- Weather Station in North London. The weather station enclosure is the most elevated of any in the London
London
area, and as a result daytime temperatures are typically one degree lower than Heathrow, Kew, Northolt and Greenwich.

CLIMATE DATA FOR HAMPSTEAD 137M ASL 1981-2010, EXTREMES 1960-

MONTH JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC YEAR

RECORD HIGH °C (°F) 15.7 (60.3) 18.3 (64.9) 23.1 (73.6) 26.6 (79.9) 29.8 (85.6) 33.7 (92.7) 34.4 (93.9) 37.4 (99.3) 29.4 (84.9) 28.3 (82.9) 17.9 (64.2) 15.3 (59.5) 37.4 (99.3)

AVERAGE HIGH °C (°F) 7.1 (44.8) 7.4 (45.3) 10.5 (50.9) 13.3 (55.9) 16.8 (62.2) 19.9 (67.8) 22.4 (72.3) 22.0 (71.6) 18.8 (65.8) 14.6 (58.3) 10.3 (50.5) 7.4 (45.3) 14.3 (57.7)

AVERAGE LOW °C (°F) 2.0 (35.6) 1.7 (35.1) 3.5 (38.3) 5.0 (41) 8.0 (46.4) 10.9 (51.6) 13.2 (55.8) 13.1 (55.6) 11.0 (51.8) 8.1 (46.6) 4.8 (40.6) 2.5 (36.5) 7.0 (44.6)

RECORD LOW °C (°F) −10.8 (12.6) −12.2 (10) −6.9 (19.6) −3.2 (26.2) −0.6 (30.9) 1.8 (35.2) 5.6 (42.1) 4.7 (40.5) 2.4 (36.3) −2.4 (27.7) −5.8 (21.6) −8.4 (16.9) −12.2 (10)

AVERAGE PRECIPITATION MM (INCHES) 64.7 (2.547) 46.6 (1.835) 48.9 (1.925) 51.5 (2.028) 58.0 (2.283) 54.2 (2.134) 50.4 (1.984) 64.4 (2.535) 56.9 (2.24) 77.7 (3.059) 68.3 (2.689) 62.9 (2.476) 704.5 (27.735)

MEAN MONTHLY SUNSHINE HOURS 57.5 76.4 107.1 151.6 192.2 191.0 199.9 193.0 140.8 109.9 69.4 51.6 1,540.4

Source: Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute

Northolt - Airfield Weather Station in the North West of London. Temperature extremes range from 37.7 °C (99.9 °F) in August 2003, down to −16.1 °C (3.0 °F) in January 1962.

CLIMATE DATA FOR NORTHOLT, 38M ASL, 1981-2010

MONTH JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC YEAR

AVERAGE HIGH °C (°F) 7.9 (46.2) 8.3 (46.9) 11.3 (52.3) 14.1 (57.4) 17.7 (63.9) 20.8 (69.4) 23.2 (73.8) 22.9 (73.2) 19.7 (67.5) 15.4 (59.7) 11.0 (51.8) 8.2 (46.8) 15.1 (59.2)

AVERAGE LOW °C (°F) 1.7 (35.1) 1.5 (34.7) 3.4 (38.1) 4.8 (40.6) 8.0 (46.4) 10.9 (51.6) 13.2 (55.8) 12.9 (55.2) 10.5 (50.9) 7.6 (45.7) 4.1 (39.4) 2.1 (35.8) 6.8 (44.2)

AVERAGE PRECIPITATION MM (INCHES) 58.2 (2.291) 43.2 (1.701) 45.5 (1.791) 45.8 (1.803) 56.0 (2.205) 47.5 (1.87) 45.3 (1.783) 51.3 (2.02) 50.6 (1.992) 72.2 (2.843) 64.9 (2.555) 59.0 (2.323) 639.8 (25.189)

Source: Met Office

Greenwich
Greenwich
- Weather Station in East London
London
located near the river Thames.

CLIMATE DATA FOR LONDON (GREENWICH ), 7M ASL, 1981-2010

MONTH JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC YEAR

AVERAGE HIGH °C (°F) 8.3 (46.9) 8.5 (47.3) 11.4 (52.5) 14.2 (57.6) 17.7 (63.9) 20.7 (69.3) 23.2 (73.8) 22.9 (73.2) 20.1 (68.2) 15.6 (60.1) 11.4 (52.5) 8.6 (47.5) 15.2 (59.4)

AVERAGE LOW °C (°F) 2.6 (36.7) 2.4 (36.3) 4.1 (39.4) 5.4 (41.7) 8.4 (47.1) 11.5 (52.7) 13.9 (57) 13.7 (56.7) 11.2 (52.2) 8.3 (46.9) 5.1 (41.2) 2.8 (37) 7.5 (45.5)

AVERAGE PRECIPITATION MM (INCHES) 51.6 (2.031) 38.2 (1.504) 40.5 (1.594) 45.0 (1.772) 46.5 (1.831) 47.3 (1.862) 41.1 (1.618) 51.6 (2.031) 50.4 (1.984) 68.8 (2.709) 58.0 (2.283) 53.0 (2.087) 591.8 (23.299)

MEAN MONTHLY SUNSHINE HOURS 49.9 71.4 107.1 159.8 181.2 181.0 192.1 195.1 138.9 108.1 58.5 37.4 1,480.5

Source: All other data from Met Office ,

SEE ALSO

* London
London
portal

* Book: London
London

* Agriculture in London
London

REFERENCES

* ^ http://www.dgcl.interieur.gouv.fr/sections/a_votre_service/lu_pour_vous/les_grandes_metropol/downloadFile/attachedFile/metropolislondres.pdf?nocache Metropolis: 027 London, World Association of the Major Metropolises * ^ "10-mile Thames
Thames
flood barrier plan". BBC News. 2005-01-01. Retrieved 2008-01-30. * ^ Jim Lewis 1999, London's Lea Valley, Phillimore, ISBN 1-86077-100-9 * ^ Sheet 160 Windsor, Weybridge & Bracknell, 1:25,000 Explorer series, Ordnance Survey, ISBN 0-319-21785-X * ^ Sheet 161 London
London
South, 1:25,000 Explorer series, Ordnance Survey, ISBN 0-319-21786-8 * ^ Sheet 162 Greenwich
Greenwich
& Gravesend, 1:25,000 Explorer series, Ordnance Survey, ISBN 0-319-21780-9 * ^ Sheet 173 London
London
North, 1:25,000 Explorer series, Ordnance Survey, ISBN 978-0-319-24164-6 * ^ Sheet 174 Epping Forest
Epping Forest
& Lee Valley, 1:25,000 Explorer series, Ordnance Survey, ISBN 0-319-21988-7 * ^ A B Ellison R.A. et al. 2004, Geology of London: Special
Special
Memoir for 1:50,000 Geological sheets 256 (North London), 257 (Romford), 270 (South London) and 271 (Dartford) (England and Wales), British Geological Survey, Keyworth, ISBN 0-85272-478-0 * ^ Sumbler M.G. (1996), London
London
and the Thames
Thames
Valley,British Regional Geology series, British Geological Survey, ISBN 0-11-884522-5

* ^ Sheet 255 Beaconsfield, 1:50,000 Geology Series, British Geological Survey, Keyworth, 2005, ISBN 0-7518-3400-9 * ^ Sheet 256 North London, 1:50,000 Geology Series, British Geological Survey, Keyworth, 2006, ISBN 0-7518-3427-0 * ^ Sheet 257 Romford, 1:50,000 Geology Series, British Geological Survey, Keyworth, 1996, ISBN 0-7518-2971-4 * ^ Sheet 269 Windsor, 1:50,000 Geology Series, British Geological Survey, Keyworth, 1999, ISBN 0-7518-3228-6 * ^ Sheet 270 South London, 1:50,000 Geology Series, British Geological Survey, Keyworth, 1998, ISBN 0-7518-3206-5 * ^ Sheet 271 Dartford, 1:50,000 Geology Series, British Geological Survey, Keyworth, 1998, ISBN 0-7518-3204-9 * ^ "January 1987 temperature". Retrieved 2011-02-24. * ^ "January 1962 weather". Archived from the original on 3 September 2015. Retrieved 29 November 2012. * ^ Rogers, Simon (21 December 2010). "20th December 2010". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 2012-11-29. * ^ "Annual average warmest day". Retrieved 2012-11-29. * ^ "Average >25c days". Retrieved 2012-11-29. * ^ "2003 Sunshine". Retrieved 2011-02-24. * ^ "Climate Normals 1981-2010". MetOffice. November 2012. Retrieved 29 Nov 2012. * ^ "Climate Normals 1971–2000". Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute . Retrieved 23 February 2011. * ^ " Kew
Kew
1981-2010 averages". Met Office . Retrieved 29 November 2012. * ^ " Hampstead
Hampstead
1971-2000". Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute . Retrieved 23 September 2011. * ^ " Kew
Kew
1981-2010 averages". Met Office . Retrieved 29 November 2012. * ^ " Greenwich
Greenwich
1981–2010 averages". Met Office . Archived from the original on 27 October 2012. Retrieved 29 November 2012.

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