Barking Riverside, Scrattons Farm and Thames View

News for residents, by residents

"...a sustainable resident-led newspaper."

Barking Riverside Limited have partnered with Thames Life and Social Spider CIC, providing funding to help transform Riverside News into a sustainable resident-led newspaper. The vision is to create a resident editorial board (REB) made up of local people who will lead in the design, production and distribution of this paper. The REB has now been established with currently four local residents; Hafiz Rahman, Kevin Hudson, Sherin Parvin, Venilia Amorim, Zainab Jalloh and Zahra Awani, being trained and supported by Social Spider to produce the quarterly publication. It will continue to share local updates as well as championing resident stories.

Submit contributions for our next issue!

Please email us with ideas for articles you would like to write:

We will discuss your article idea with you before confirming if it is something we’d like to include.

Meet the REB

We are a group of residents with a passion for unifying all parts of the local area, spreading the news of what’s going on and topics of joy or concern!







Want to join the board?

We are always excited to meet like minded residents who are passionate about sharing stories about our area!

Our latest issue

Missed the last issue of The RiverView? Check it out here!


Find out the latest goings on across Thames View, Barking Riverside and Scrattons Farm!

Hafiz Rahman

I have been a resident of Thames Ward since 2005. When I moved to this ward, I knew I was here for the long term, hence I have been keen to get involved at a community level. I am a college lecturer, teaching students who are between the ages of 16-19 with some adult provisions.

Thames View Muslim Association
My first community involvement was in 2013, where I worked with the Thames View Muslim Association (TVMA). The primary motivation was to help the organisation engage with the wider community and establish facilities for worship, children’s education, and various community awareness programmes. I found myself working with people of different backgrounds, age groups and skillsets.

TVMA currently has 11 trustees and hundreds of members where we work collectively to ensure the voice of the locals is heard. Over the years TVMA has organised Eid in the Park, Jummah, five-times prayer, educational programmes and free food events, to name a few.

Thames View Community Garden and TRA
After losing a lot of gardening space to an extension project at my house, my mother sent me on a mission to find plots of land to grow vegetables. Luckily, I didn’t have to look far. More on the garden in a separate article (see page 8).

In the summer of 2021, I became involved with the Tenants and Residents Association (TRA) aiming to work with the residents, council officials and other organisations so that tenants’ voices are taken seriously, that being one of the concerns of the residents. Currently our objective is to increase awareness of the TRA and promote the importance of having residents’ voices heard.

Thames Ward Community Project and REB
I decided to get involved with Thames Ward Community Project (TWCP) and the Resident Editorial Board (REB) after a short conversation with Jamie Kesten, the Deputy CEO of Thames Life. I was informed of the various projects that the Project is working on and felt that is something that I should get involved with.

I am optimistic that I can benefit as a resident, as well as help others with my contribution. Shortly after signing me up to TWCP, Jamie impressed upon me the idea of being part of the REB. And so as an English teacher and being in education for all my working career, here I am writing my first article.

Kevin Hudson

I was “born n bred” in Barking as the saying goes, into a welfare state with free healthcare, decent affordable housing, proper pensions, and free education. Quite a change from the situation many young people find themselves in these days! Technically, I’m an “Essex Boy”, because Barking was in Essex.. until 1965! I attended the local schools, then on to higher education…the first in my family to be a “college boy”.

The story of Barking and Dagenham too, is a story of constant change. I have lived most of my time on Thames View Estate, since the houses were built there in the mid 1950’s. Thousands of new homes were built in the shadow of a coal-fired power station, and the “giant” electricity pylons carrying hundreds of thousands of volts across the land. For decades, vast areas of the old marshes had been used to dump ‘fly-ash’ from the power station. Millions of tonnes of it! In those days, the area was perceived as being suitable only as a place to dump its waste in landfill by those in power. The rubbish dumps were the playground of many local children. Many people around here still have old pottery, bottles, and metal toys that they rescued from the soil. We’d often venture further out to the banks of the River Thames, and explore the WW2 air-raid bunkers, long since derelict, built to protect workers at the power station from bombing by the German Air Force… some change! We’d find piles of discarded army surplus gas-masks and army kit, which we’d wear and clomp about in. The area was so vast, there was still plenty of the old marshland creeks to explore. There were still, right into the 1980’s, a small herd of cows around the Choat’s Road and the shoreline. Sometimes the cows would manage to dodge around the fences and wander onto the housing estate. Industrial development and the giant Ford works along the A13 and the ‘car culture’ brought its own changes, and affected the sense of ‘belonging’ and identity to the area. Some things haven’t changed, though. The River Thames seems timeless. Go there, and you can still see the massive bird feeding areas and the important wildlife habitat that have existed there for ages. It’s like that, here… changing, yet changeless.

It all goes to create a unique place full of character and identity and a sense of ‘belonging’ for those who live here, even though much has changed: the old power station is long gone, the cattle moved off, the fly-ash buried out of sight, but small bits of the original wide-open marshes have survived. Most recently, the most noticeable change is the massive 800 acre Barking Riverside housing development. This too, is bringing its unique set of challenges. We, all of us, bring our own sense of identity to this shared space. But I guess ultimately, this has to be about ‘belonging’. Are we capable of creating spaces in which people share that same sense of a unique character… and belonging?

Sherin Parvin

Hi all! My name is Sherin, and it is an absolute pleasure to be a part of the Resident Editorial Board (REB). I am a teacher by profession. I moved to Barking Riverside with my family a month prior to the first national lockdown and became a part of a caring and supportive community. This is what makes Barking Riverside so special!

I have been actively involved in local community initiatives in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets where I used to reside. Growing up, my parents emphasised the importance of ‘being of service to your community’ this is probably where my passion for community work stems from. In particular, I am passionate about working with young people and this has led me to joining the Scouts Association and working as the Section Lead for Young Leaders (14+). I enjoy mentoring young people and watching them progress and flourish as changemakers. I am currently working on a manual on mentoring to support mentors and mentees in our communities. I hope I can engage more young people to come forward and write for and engage with The RiverView.
I’m an avid traveller and believe travelling and reading are avenues to broaden horizons. It is an absolute joy spending time with my growing children – it’s never a dull day with teens! I do love quotes and one of my favourite ones that I will leave you with today is: ‘Challenge yourself; it’s the only path that leads to growth.’

Venilia Amorim

Hello readers! My name is Venilia and I’ve been living in Barking Riverside for 10 years, which bumps my total time living in the borough to almost 19 years.

I moved to Phase One of the Barking Riverside estate because apart from being affordable (well, at least back then…) I loved the fact that it was so close to the river. Being a Mediterranean, I need to be near water. It soothes my soul.

I’m really happy to see how much it has changed and grown since I moved to the area with new blocks of flats, green spaces, shops, café and even the awesome Food Forest.

Over the past few years of living in Barking Riverside, I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the fact that the community we have is so tightly knit. I know my neighbours, our children play and go to school together, some of which I can truly call my friends.

In such a large and diverse city like London (and indeed in this borough) knowing who lives next door to you, let alone on your street, is a rare thing.

I’m a journalist and editor by trade and so joining the Resident Editorial Board (REB) was really a no-brainer.

I’m already quite involved with the community – I’m the secretary of the Barking Reach Residents Association, a resident director of the Barking Riverside Limited Community Interest Company, and a governor at one of our local schools, to name a few of my community hats.

Being so involved with the local people at so many different levels prompted me to add one more role to my list of how I can be helpful in the community – being an REB member.

Despite all my skills and experience, the REB is always looking for residents from all different backgrounds to join us, so if you have a passion that you would like to share with your neighbours, we would gladly welcome that.

As readers I hope you have been enjoying all the material and articles that the REB has been proudly putting together for you all.

Zahra Awani

Hi all, I’m Zahra. I’m part of The RiverView Resident Editorial Board (REB) and resident of Phase 2 on the Barking Riverside estate. I’ve lived here since 2020 and thankfully my husband and I moved to a bigger place ahead of the pandemic! Born and bred a North Londoner, now an East Londoner for the past seven years and absolutely loving it. Moving from the green of Hainault, to the more urban Barking Riverside, the community feel here is truly unparalleled.

After working in corporate marketing for 10 years, I found losing my job due to the pandemic, the perfect opportunity to search for a more fulfilling role. I soon found a job as operations and communications lead for Church At Barking Riverside, and that helped introduce me to so many wonderful people in the community who make a real impact on those around us. It reignited my love for writing and inspired a dormant want to be active in my community.

It led me to join the REB for The RiverView, become a trustee for Thames Life (previously Thames Ward Community Project, TWCP) and the Barking Reach Resident Association (BRRA). I have found a passion to make sure everyone on the estate and the wider borough has a platform to voice their opinions and concerns, as well as share their loves and joys.

My hope for the ward is for everyone to feel they have a place to have their say and speak their truth. Having a young family, I really hope this is the area where my daughter and those of the next generation can thrive, in a safe environment.

So, if you have a passion you’d like to share with the rest of your community, it would be great to hear from you, whether that be with a contribution in our coming issues or if you’d like to join the REB. In the meantime, I hope you enjoy reading the paper as much as we enjoy putting it together and if you have any thoughts or feedback, please do share!

Zainab Jalloh

Hey neighbours! I’m Zainab, a part of the Resident Editorial Board, resident of Barking Riverside for 4 years and a community worker at Thames Life! I’ve lived in the area since 2019, but only really got to exploring in 2020 once I had my first child (albeit the pandemic hit). I call myself a third culture kid, born in Saudi Arabia, of African descent but raised in South London. Moving to Barking Riverside for us was typical in terms of seeking an affordable home but I couldn’t imagine we would be a part of such a proactive and caring community!

I previously worked in the legal field, but community engagement has always been a part of my calling. After joining a few community groups in 2020, the opportunity to work with TWCP now called Thames Life was shared in a WhatsApp group (we do love a good WhatsApp in this area),  applied and was successful! Being a part of Thames Life and this flourishing community has genuinely changed my mental wellbeing and given me the precious opportunity of building with others. This is doesn’t happen everywhere in London. We have a unique power to create our narrative, have open conversations with stakeholders and design spaces that we actually want.

During my day job, I’m a Communications Officer, and I’ve always loved writing, which is why being a part of The RiverView Newspaper is something I couldn’t be prouder of. It’s important to me that everyone in the area be able to have a platform for their voices to be heard. Everyone has a story to share and it’s okay if not all our experiences are positive, it’s important we work together to make impact and create change. My hope is for us all to be a part of developing an area that we are proud to call home and the next generation can thrive in.

If you would like to contribute to upcoming issues or if you’d like to join the REB do get in touch. For now, I really hope you enjoy reading the paper we’ve put together and we would love to receive any feedback that you have!