Thames Clippers to accept Oyster in November

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Oyster cards will be accepted on Thames Clipper ferries from November.

A new direct service from Canary Wharf to London Bridge has also been unveiled by London Mayor Boris Johnson as part of a package of river transport improvements for the capital.

The river run from the Wharf will start from today.

Transport for London has pledged to work with pier owners, boat operators and borough councils on a "river concordat", which is designed to ensure improvements in ticketing and piers and improved signage. A total of 30 organisations have already signed up to the scheme.

TfL will fund an extension of Tower Pier to relieve congestion, which will be completed by 2011, and other piers could also be stretched. Mayor Johnson also aims to co-ordinate the river services with the 2012 games, with ferry services available at the start and finish of events at the London Olympics and Paralympics.

Boris Johnson said: "With the right mixture of investment and imagination river services can become a truly integral, as well as an extremely pleasant, part of the capital's transport network.

"Oysterising the Thames as well as providing clearer signage to the piers and services available will make it much easier for Londoners to travel on the river.

"The Thames is also a vital part of the 2012 transport strategy and with the Games now so close the members of the Concordat fully realise the importance of making an Olympic effort to get our services and piers up to scratch.

"When the world comes to London I want visitors to be able to glory in the beauty of our great waterway as they whiz between the centre of the capital and Olympic venues at Greenwich."

Thames Clipper managing director Sean Collins said: "Thames Clippers carried 2.7 million passengers in 2008, a 388 per cent increase in passenger numbers over a two year period as a direct result of our investment in six new fast ferries.

"I believe that the areas that the Concordat focuses on, especially the Oyster card, will increase demand even further, providing Londoners and visitors to our great city with the high standard of service they deserve and to showcase this to the world in 2012."

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