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Dagenham Dock station opened on the original southern route in 1908.
It has formed part of Greater London since 1965 and is a predominantly residential area, with some areas of declining industrial activity, including the Ford Dagenham plant.
The southern part of Dagenham, adjacent to the River Thames, forms part of the London Riverside section of the Thames Gateway redevelopment area.
In 1931 the Ford Motor Company relocated from Trafford Park in Manchester, to a plant in Dagenham, which was already the location of supplier Briggs Motor Bodies.
A 500-acre (2 km²) riverside site was developed to become Europe's largest car plant, a vast vertically integrated site with its own blast furnaces and power station, importing iron ore and exporting finished vehicles.
By the 1950s Ford had taken over Briggs at Dagenham and its other sites at Doncaster, Southampton, Croydon and Romford.