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port in Thurrock unitary authority, historic county of Essex, England. It lies along the north bank of the River Thames, opposite Gravesend, 26 miles (42 km) downstream of London Bridge. It is famous for its docks; constructed in 1884-86, they have been extensively modernized and extended by the Port of London Authority. Tilbury is now the principal container port of the Port of London: "roll-on, roll-off" facilities have been provided since 1965. The quays extend more than 4 miles (6.5 km), and the riverside landing stage, 1,142 feet (348 metres) long, enables the largest ships to embark or disembark passengers at any stage of the tide. Pop. (2001) 11,462.