Bromley Unitary Development Plan

Proof of Philip Kolvin

Crystal Palace Park

Crystal Palace Campaign

Section 11

This is the first government in our lifetime that has acknowledged the importance of parks and greenspace to the 'liveability' of our towns and cities.

Paul Bramhill, Chief Executive, Green Space


The Revival of the Urban Park


It is generally recognised that over the last half century, a lack of local authority resources and the lack of statutory responsibility for parks maintenance have conspired to perpetuate a decline in the quality and standard of our urban parks. No doubt, the question of resources influenced Bromley's thinking in wishing to attract commercial development to the Park.


In this section, I shall demonstrate that over the last decade, our national thinking has moved on, in several ways. First, the importance of the role the urban park plays in our community life has come to be better understood and redefined. Second, there is far greater planning and policy protection for the urban park than formerly. Third, there are many organisations which have come into being or have grown in the last decade which provide mechanisms and structures for park protection and enhancement. Fourth, there is a greater range and availability of funding for parkland enhancement. Thus, if there ever was currency in Bromley's notion that in order to regenerate a glory of Victorian landscaping one needed to build a multiplex cinema on it, the notion is gravely outdated.

Local Agenda 21 (1992)


The 1992 Rio Earth Summit gave rise to the programme known as Agenda 21, which has in turn generated widespread local initiatives assisting communities to become more involved in planning and managing their natural environment. This has undoubtedly contributed to the rebirth of interest in our open spaces in general and urban open spaces in particular.

Sustainable Development: The UK Strategy (1994)


The Strategy adopted the definition of sustainable development as meaning that which "meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs."


For towns and cities, it was stated that elements of sustainable development included:

  • compact settlements to allow lower energy consumption;
  • local amenities to reduce the need for travel;
  • improving the quality of urban life to reduce development pressure in the countryside;
  • creating and protecting green space.


It is an obvious concomitant that the urban park has an important role to play in the development of our urban landscapes. The Strategy was soon after cited in "Greening the City" (below).

Park Life: Urban Parks and Social Renewal (Comedia/Demos, 1995)


The Park Life report was of seminal importance in informing the modern debate regarding the role of urban parks in social renewal. It was based on an 18-month research project involving twelve local authorities and thousands of observations and interviews. A helpful brochure summarised its main points.[44]


It took as its starting point that whereas the Victorian park had been at the forefront of urban development, and were the most enduring and defining types of public space in our urban areas, the contribution they made to our quality of life had been undervalued, and they had become neglected and relegated in our political agenda. [45]


It was pointed out that local communities still take great pride in their parks, and they act as a meeting place and focal point of communities. They provide a source of local continuity and sense of "place" in a rapidly changing urban scene.[46]


It argued that the informal open setting of the urban park, (the place to walk the dog, have a picnic, kick a ball about), and the sense of freedom this generates, is not genuinely replaceable by more formal provision (the theme park, gym etc.)[47] It described the park as sanctuary, a place where people mark the passage of their lives.[48]


The importance of the park as sanctuary was highlighted by survey data which showed that about 70% of people walk to parks, with 40% visiting their parks every day.[49]


The flexibility of parks was stressed, in that the park is able to play host to a range of outdoor activities and events, as well as providing an informal play space.[50] The kind of "play" of course differs according to age, and to some extent demography and ethnicity. The needs of a 4 year old are different from those of a 15 year old or a pensioner.


The report noted the importance of the park as a backcloth for our individual development:

"The strength of feeling which many people exhibited in talking about "their" park confirmed the uniqueness of such places within the wider pattern of urban life. For while everything else in the city changes, or so it seems, the park stays the same, and becomes a repository for popular memory, and therefore a key symbolic feature in the local sense of place."[51]


While the authors plainly did not advocate a "do nothing" approach in response to that sentiment, the intense local feeling about parks requires to be reflected in management and regeneration approaches. The authors made it clear that more money was only part of the solution. Instead, the role of the park needed to be rethought in the light of the needs and changes of a modern city.[52] This requires a strategic approach, and better and more effective models of management, consultation and partnership.[53] It pointed to a dire need for more sophisticated, open minded and responsive methods of involving people in decision making. [54]


It also recommended national guidance for parks which was more reflective of the concerns about sustainable development following the Earth Summit.[55] It pointed out that much of the interesting new art in Britain is sculptural, architectural and concerned with natural landscaping, and stated that there were clear opportunities for parks to become the sites of new artistic landscaping features.[56]

Better Parks, Better Cities (Department of Environment, 1995)


This was a follow up to the Park Life report.

People, Parks and Cities (Comedia, 1996)


In 1996, the Department of the Environment commissioned this report into good practice in park provision, management and maintenance, which was based on a number of case studies. This originated in the work carried out in 1995 in Park Life and in Better Parks, Better Cities, but also looked forward to an era in which lottery funding could be used to promote urban park renewal.


The report made the point that while public parks have suffered from chronic under-funding, this was not the whole problem. It was said that the pattern of use of urban parks had changed since Victorian times. The possibilities for imaginative use of urban parks were inexhaustible, but included educational uses, uses tied into health policies, leisure, sport and play for children, voluntary involvement in conservation and other projects, community facilities, the strengthening of local connections, networks and experiments in projects to enhance local democratic control, and training and employment/commercial opportunities.[57]


The report underlined that the planning of parks was intimately bound up with responding to local needs and concerns, and that there was a need for a greater understanding of consultation methods and good practice.[58]


The report advocated individual park management plans, setting out declarations of aims, appraisals of the park, access, circulation, physical analysis, ecological analysis, an action plan including priorities, a design concept for the whole park, a financial plan, a statement of management structures, clear statements of the roles of partners (e.g. friends groups, wildlife groups, sports clubs etc.), an events programme, a framework for encouraging wider participation and so on. In essence, the report advocates an approach which takes an overview of the whole park, based on an understanding of its strengths and weaknesses, and involves the participation of its core constituency - the park users.[59]


The report acknowledges that buildings in parks can provide focus, and some of the facilities needed for modern parks, e.g. toilets and refreshments. Facilities such as cafes, swimming pools, child care facilities and club houses are given as examples.[60]

Greening the City (Department of Environment, 1996)


The Greening the City initiative was launched by the Government in 1995 to promote ideas and discussions and ideas about the creation, protection, management and maintenance of green areas in our towns and cities, draw together examples of good practice and encouraging new ideas in landscape design.


It pointed out some key benefits of urban greening, namely:

  • helping inward investment and business retention by improving the image of an area; environmental benefits, including pollution control, enhancing biodiversity and contributing to sustainable development;
  • enhanced quality of life for people living and working in an area;
  • educational, social and cultural advantages, raising the esteem and self-confidence of communities, improving leisure and recreational facilities;
  • providing a positive environmental image for business and encouraging tourism;
  • contributing to healthier lifestyles and community development.[61]


It was drawn from 22 case studies. It stressed that involving local communities was a "key feature" of publicly funded regeneration practice. Such involvement was a "fundamental aspect of good practice in the design and implementation of greening initiatives", to be "embarked upon as early as possible within the planning/development process."[62] This should be followed by partnership in implementing proposals. Again, a strategic approach was advocated.[63]


Such a strategic approach included starting with proper baseline surveys including a review of the perceptions and priorities of local people, setting goals and objectives and then shaping the policy itself. It was stated that greening strategies must inform the statutory planning framework, influencing the Unitary Development Plan.[64] Detailed advice was given on promoting partnership as part of this exercise.[65]

Report on public parks (House of Commons Environment, Transport and Regional Affairs Select Committee, 1999)


This report raised grave concerns over the future of our public parks and called for action to reverse the decline. It underlined how parks can be at the centre of our attempts to regenerate our communities: "We believe that parks are key features in the renaissance of our urban areas. They have been instrumental in the regeneration of New York, Barcelona and Paris. They need to be recognised and resourced as such by central and local government. In addition, the Social Exclusion Unit should give a high priority to making parks attractive places where all the community can enjoy themselves." It advocated a series of measures to deal with the problem, expressing itself "shocked at the weight of the evidence, far beyond our expectations, about the extent of the problems parks have faced in the last 30 years."

The Urban Design Compendium (English Partnerships, 2000)


This publication, which was chiefly concerned with good practice in developing the urban environment, nevertheless advocated the creation of park life. It set out a hierarchy of parks, Crystal Palace Park falling within the typology of "Metropolitan Park". It pointed out that a variety of parkland distributed within the urban area ensured a range of recreational needs within close proximity to homes and workplaces. It will be noted that it described Crystal Palace Park as a "valued community resource."[66]

Our towns and cities: the future. (DETR, 2000)


The White Paper consciously espoused the vision of the Urban Task Force, and set out the following way forward.[67]

  • Making efficient use of land and reducing the demand for greenfield development.
  • Encouraging well laid out urban areas, including good quality public open spaces.
  • Easy access to work and local services.
  • Improved public transport.


It stated:

"This does not mean cramming people closer and closer together. It means development at reasonable densities which protect open spaces…"[68]


The report stressed the importance of the local environment. It stated that "access to green spaces reduces stress and promotes well-being. Parks and open spaces are among the most valued features of the places people live."[69] It also stressed an approach to restoring the historic character of our urban environment and encouraging safe, well designed and managed public open spaces like parks, play areas and recreational areas.[70]


A section of the report dealt specifically with parks, play areas and public spaces. It stated:

"Well managed public open spaces such as greens, squares, parks, children's play areas… and recreational and sporting areas improve the attractiveness of urban areas and help promote a healthier lifestyle. They … bring benefits for wildlife and the environment, act as an important educational tool and can relieve pressure on the countryside. They are therefore vital to enhancing the quality of urban environments and the quality of our lives."[71]


The report noted that in the last few decades a lot of urban open space had been lost to encroaching development, with too much of what was left neglected and poorly maintained. It shared the concerns of the House of Commons Environment, Transport and Regional Affairs Select Committee of 1999.


It stated that it was not only a question of funding a reverse of the decline, but finding more imaginative solutions, which make a difference to the quality of life. It promised action in three areas: leading and developing a shared vision (through ministerial involvement and the identification of opportunities for building and supporting partnerships in the management of open spaces); improving the information base as to good practice; and improving the way we plan and design parks.[72]

Power of Place: The future of the historic environment (English Heritage, 2001).


English Heritage established a large cross-sectional steering group to consider and report on the policy issues involved with the historic environment as a focus for future policy development. It stated that public parks were a vital part of the historic environment and had suffered badly from under-funding and lack of leadership. It welcomed the Government's decision, announced in the Urban White Paper, to give the Regeneration Minister responsibility for achieving improvements to England's parks. It recommended the establishment of funding targets for the clearance of the backlog of repairs to parks and gardens, and the reversal of cuts in expenditure.

Public Parks Assessment: A survey of local authority owned parks focussing on parks of historic interest (Urban Parks Forum, 2001)


The emergence of the Urban Parks Forum (now re-named Green Space) in 1999 as a champion of the regeneration of urban parks has been a strong recent development. This report followed an extensive survey of local authorities by the Forum, in conjunction with the DTLR, Heritage Lottery Fund, English Heritage and the Countryside Agency. The report revealed serious decline in our historic parks, fuelled by a decline in expenditure on maintenance. It found that historic parks had suffered disproportionately from reduction in revenue expenditure, as resources tended to go to formal recreation. It found a loss of up to 75% of historic features and of 25% in basic facilities such as toilets. Registration conferred no real protection, save for Grade I Parks. It stated that the challenge for the future was to arrest the decline and start a renaissance in open spaces creating attractive, relevant and popular facilities for the enjoyment of all.

The Value of Parks and Open Spaces (Local Government Association, 2001).


This report highlighted that parks had no national agency, no single source of strategic guidance and no individual to raise the profile of the plight of open spaces. It found this a poor state of affairs given the role of green space in contributing to an individual's and community's well-being and regeneration. It urged councils to integrate dedicated plans for parks and open spaces into their cultural and community strategies. The report has been part of the movement towards a better understanding and promotion of the role of urban parks in our community life.

Green Spaces Investigative Committee (London Assembly, 2001)


The importance of open spaces to Londoners was reflected by the report of the above committee, which took evidence with a view to examining threats and opportunities in relation to green belt and open spaces in London. It pointed out that 1,000 hectares of green space in London were lost to development in 1989-99, which was compounded by neglect, low political priority and decreasing resources. It advocated a strategic vision for green space in the London Plan, and the establishment of a London forum for green space. It pointed out the pressure for development of green space and advocated protection. It regretted the piecemeal loss of green space to development, and the lack of a strategic overview. It deplored the purposeful neglect of green space in order to increase the chance of its development, including, sometimes unwittingly, by local authorities. It considered local participation essential.

Improving Urban Parks, Play Areas and Green Spaces (Urban Research Report. DTLR, 2002)


This report set out the findings of research carried out to inform the work of the Urban Green Spaces Taskforce, which was set up to advise the Government on proposals for improving the quality of urban parks, play areas and green spaces.


It reiterated the main benefits of urban green space, which:

  • contributes to social inclusion because it is free and accessible to all;
  • provides neutral ground available to all sectors of society and can become the focus of community spirit;
  • contributes to child development through outdoor, energetic and imaginative play;
  • offers numerous education opportunities;
  • assists in promoting good health;
  • contributes to the maintenance of biodiversity;
  • contributes to landscape and cultural heritage;
  • acts as a "green lung";
  • provides opportunities to develop sustainable management practices;
  • enhances the economy of the surrounding area.[73]


Like all preceding studies, it emphasised the strategic, partnership-led approach, and stated that whether this happened was often down to the culture of consultation within the authority concerned.


The study considered the reasons why 32% of people are non-users or infrequent users of parks. The five barriers identified were lack of, or poor condition of, facilities, the character of other users, concerns about dogs/dog mess, safety issues, and environmental quality issues.[74] When asked what would bring them back, the answers tended to be cafes, toilets, dog litter bins, seating, litter bins, information boards, children's play areas and sports areas, together with better security measures.[75] The aspirations, therefore, are predominantly concerned with the provision of high quality, safe open space.

Green Spaces, Better Places, Final report of The Urban Green Spaces Taskforce (DTLR 2002)


This report clearly articulated modern thinking regarding the need to reverse the decline in the urban park:

"The best of our urban parks and green spaces remain popular. Millions of people appreciate the benefits they bring to their lives, their neighbourhoods, their towns and cities and the whole nation.

"Across the country there is increasing public awareness and appreciation of the value of good quality parks, play areas and green spaces in regenerating towns and cities, improving the health and well-being of local people and providing educational opportunities for children and communities.

"Despite their popularity there has been a worrying decline in the quality of too many urban parks and green spaces for which action is needed to deliver these benefits.

"The final report of the Urban Green Spaces Taskforce has a simple message: now is the time for an urban renaissance with parks and diverse green spaces. The report sets out a programme for national and local government to work in partnership with local communities, business, voluntary organisations and others to revitalise parks and green spaces."[76]


As well as reiterating the benefits of parks, the report noted the important part which heritage and culture plays in parks. It states that parks are part of local heritage, providing reservoirs of collective memory, and also acting as a showcase for contemporary sculptures.[77]


It recommended that local government, working through local strategic partnerships should make it a priority to provide high quality parks and green spaces to serve the needs of people in disadvantaged areas: this should be at the heart of neighbourhood renewal.[78]


The report contained a key recommendation to protecting existing green spaces:

"The Government's emphasis on making best use of previously developed land in urban areas and consequent higher densities will lead to increased pressures on existing green spaces. They become both more necessary and more vulnerable to development. It is all the more important then for local planning authorities to put in place policies that will ensure that urban green spaces are protected from development. There is an urgent need for a clear-cut statement in revised national guidance about the degree of protection to be given to existing green spaces. Developing local green space hierarchies is one way of setting out how different spaces will be protected and enhanced. Another is to maintain their quality - people are more likely to get involved to protect a good quality space, than a poor run down one."[79]


That recommendation was carried through into a further suggestion that provision, protection and enhancement of urban parks and green spaces should be key objectives which should underpin national planning guidance.[80]


The report set out principles for good quality spaces. It cited research in Sheffield, which found the following to constitute the ideal park:

  • Variety - e.g. meadows, formal gardens
  • Vegetation
  • Water - fountains, streams, lakes, ponds, waterfalls
  • Sensory stimulation - scent and colour
  • Opportunities for play
  • Provision for young people
  • Seating, shelters, toilets.[81]

More than Swings and Roundabouts, Planning for Outdoor Play (Children's Play Council, 2002)


This publication set out best practice in planning for children's outdoor play. It reminded us that:

"Understanding the outdoor play needs of children and young people can lead to better provision for everyone and more harmonious community relations. Where children and young people have a range of attractive outdoor play spaces and activities available to them in accessible, safe locations, and are fully engaged in activities they enjoy, they are less likely to encroach on the space and sensibilities of adults. Parents will be reassured that their children can enjoy positive activities out of doors, and there is likely to be less conflict with other local residents. The spaces themselves and the process of creating and improving them may also contribute to building social cohesion and supporting informal networks of family support, bringing communities together and adding to the "social capital" of a neighbourhood."[82]


It might here be pointed out that for residents of the upper parts of the area, e.g. Sydenham and Norwood, the top site functions as its village green, and it is a long way to take children down to the play facilities at the bottom of the park. Those play facilities themselves are at best modest, which remains an indictment while grandiose schemes are mooted for the park. I am unaware of any attempt ever made by Bromley to analyse the play needs of the children of the area, and publications such as More than Swings and Roundabouts ought to be required reading. As the publication points out, there are many funding opportunities for enhancement of play facilities, e.g. through Neighbourhood Renewal Strategies, the New Opportunities Fund and section 106 agreements.[83]

Your Parks, The Benefits of Parks and Greenspace (Urban Parks Forum, 2002)


In this short publication, which is reproduced in its entirety at Appendix 6, the Urban Parks Forum reiterates the key benefits of parkland. It shows that the quality of a park is an important component of urban regeneration and community cohesion. It often reflects the history of the surrounding community, as of course Crystal Palace does. The park may be a repository of our cultural heritage. It acts as an ecological, educational and recreational resource, and so on. It reminds us that over 30 million people in England use parks, making over 2 billion visits a year. 70% of people use their parks frequently. These numbers and concepts explain the depth and extent of the reaction to the proposal to take the head of this Park out of park use and to assign it to a town centre commercial leisure use.

Public Parks Assessment (Urban Parks Forum, 2002)


This was the first ever major report on the state of the nation's public parks, producing major findings on land types and use, finance, condition, visitor numbers and so on. It has catalysed the government's political and funding response to the problem, moving the maintenance and enhancement of parkland up the political agenda.

Parks and Green Space, Engaging the Community (Urban Parks Forum, 2002)


This publication is designed to exhort park managers to involve the community in the management of parks and open space. This is strongly to be advocated, given that parks are planned for local communities, and their wishes should, in the ordinary course of things, prevail or at least carry very great weight.

Towards London's Green Renaissance (Groundwork, 2003)


This publication was written in conjunction with the Mayor, the London Development Agency and the London Parks and Greenspaces Forum, and was the product of best practice and modern thinking in relation to London's green spaces. The Minister for Housing, Planning and Regeneration, Tony McNulty, wrote the following, which underlines the role of green space in the regeneration of London as a world city, and the central role of local people in making the key choices:

"The vitality of the public realm sits firmly at the heart of this Government's approach to building sustainable communities. We are also committed to ensuring that London continues to develop as a world city in which people are proud to live and work.

"There is a direct correlation between access to good quality open spaces and thriving, prosperous neighbourhoods. Clean, safe and attractive streets, parks and public spaces can improve health and well-being, provide opportunities for play and relaxation, reduce crime and the fear of crime and inspire respect and civic pride. What's more, enabling local people to determine the future of their own environment can be the catalyst that kickstarts major improvements in quality of life.

"London has huge potential to become a shining example of the way in which a community-led and co-ordinated approach to open space planning can bring a wide range of benefits for people, places and prosperity. As Minister for London I am committed to making this vision a reality."


The report underlined the crucial role of green space in creating community spirit and promoting social inclusion, as places for relaxation, socialising and play, wildlife habitats and green lungs. But it pointed out that the capital's parks are in a state of decline.


The report made the following highly pertinent point:

"The creation of a single strategic body to represent London, the Greater London Authority, the need for holistic thinking to tackle a range of common issues and the simple fact that borough boundaries are insignificant to the communities themselves, creates an increased need for planning to be considered on a regional and not purely borough-level basis. Nowhere is this more true than for open spaces, as many are physically located across more than one borough, or draw users from a wide geographical area."


The report brought together many examples of best practice in parkland regeneration from across London. It underlined the dangers to parks of fragmentation, and urban expansion. Needless to say, it does not advocate the use of commercial leisure facilities (or any other substantial commercial development) as a means of regenerating parkland.

New Green Organisations


The Urban Parks Forum, which has recently changed its name to Green Space, is not the only organisation to have emerged in response to the perceived need for concerted action to arrest and reverse the decline in our green open spaces. Organisations include:

  • Groundwork. Founded in 1981, this national federation supports tens of thousands of volunteers and harnesses the efforts of public, private and voluntary sector interests in upgrading the environment, realising the full potential of under-used land, converting brownfield sites to productive use etc.[84]
  • The Development Trusts Association.[85] This organisation supports community enterprise organisations in establishing development trusts. The model has been widely used in the regeneration of parks. The Campaign advocated a development trust approach for Crystal Palace Park, but was unable to secure dialogue with Bromley to make it happen.
  • The British Trust for Conservation Volunteers.[86] This organisation offers help and advice to local communities who wish to improve their environment, and is involved in many Local Agenda 21 initiatives. They frequently work with business to raise funds for environmental initiatives, making the strong point that it is possible to improve the environment with corporate sponsorship without needing to build over it.
  • Federation of City Farms and Community Gardens. An organisation which, as its name implies, promotes the protection and enhancement of these important facilities through local volunteers. It supports over 65 farms and 1,200 community gardens.
  • English Nature, whose Wildspace! scheme involved local communities in the improvement, care and enjoyment of their local environment.
  • The Civic Trust, whose Green Flag award scheme rewards excellence in the maintenance and enhancement of green spaces.


On a governmental level, the Government has now appointed the Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment (formerly the Royal Fine Art Commission) to be the national body responsible for parks and open land. The new organisation, CABE Space, has appointed a director of GreenSpace to assume responsibility for urban parks. This is clear recognition of the importance now accorded to the preservation of urban parks as a national planning and political priority.


The year one work plan for CABE Space includes:

  • Enabling local authorities to develop strategic planning approaches in public space design, management and maintenance.
  • Developing a series of good practice guides on the design and maintenance of parks and public spaces.
  • Setting up a standard system of performance measurement for the quality of parks.
  • Providing targeted training to professional groups to ensure there are the skills to deliver improvements on the ground.


These objectives underline how important strategic approaches are in individual parks, rather than a retrograde, fragmentary approach which seeks to raise capital finance at the expense of the space itself.


The emergence of the Urban Parks Forum on the national stage has been mirrored by the emergence on the London stage of the London Parks and Green Spaces Forum to bring together local authorities and other managers to share information, experience and good practice. The Steering Group involves local authorities, the Corporation of London, the Royal Parks Agency, the GLA, English Nature, English Heritage, Groundwork and many others. That body has worked together with Groundwork to produce a report called "Towards London's Green Renaissance", and calls for more help for local communities to get practically involved in the improvement of their parks, more commitment for building strategies for green spaces in regional planning initiatives, and a more imaginative approach to green networks which promote sustainable transport and local identity. The report was financed in part by the London Development Agency and the Greater London Authority, which serves to underline the importance placed by the London strategic authorities on the protection of parkland.


With the development of new organisations, there is a series of emergent funding streams for the regeneration of parkland. Recent funding streams have included:

  • Living Spaces, which provides up to £100,000 for local communities to regenerate their open space, funded by ODPM, co-ordinated by Groundwork, GreenSpace, British Trust for Conservation Volunteers, Civic Trust, Federation of City Farms and Community Gardens and the Wildlife Trusts.
  • The Strategic Enablers Scheme. This scheme, which was launched on 6 June 2003, is managed by the CABE Space unit. The scheme is designed to provide 5-25 days' assistance to local authorities which want help to develop green space strategies.
  • In February 2003, the Deputy Prime Minister unveiled the Government's action plan to deliver sustainable communities and decent places in Sustainable Communities - Building for the Future. The plan sets parks and public spaces at the core of sustainable places and announced an additional £201 million up to 2005/06 to improve liveability and local environments, including parks and green spaces.


In addition, of course, funding streams are available through a series of bodies concerned with heritage (e.g. Heritage Lottery Fund), the arts, including public art (e.g. the Arts Council), regeneration (Land Restoration Trust) and sport (e.g. Sports Lottery Fund).


As indication of the extent of funding which is now realisable through the public sector, Mile End Park in East London was regenerated with £25m, predominantly of grant money and Battersea Park raised over £11m. Thus, the right ideas, advanced in co-operation with the local community and other stakeholders, have genuine potential for raising the requisite capital finance.


At the same time, dozens of schemes across the country have realised the potential for private giving and corporate fund-raising to underpin local regeneration efforts. These have not been explored at all at Crystal Palace, which has clear potential for such an approach because of its unique history and value to local people.


The commitment of the ODPM to placing parks at the heart of our urban life is underlined by the extract from its web-site[87], which re-articulates some of the thinking which has underpinned this section.


In summary there has been a real recognition over the last decade that our parks are at the heart of our urban life, and require a strategic approach to their regeneration and renewal, in partnership with local communities. At the same time, the Government has established funding streams and mechanisms to allow that to happen, and to increase our knowledge base as to the role and functions of urban parks.


It would be fair to say that the notion of designating a substantial and prominent open site at the head of a major historic park for built commercial leisure without any proper appraisal of the wishes and priorities of local people runs counter to every tenet and element of park thinking over the last decade.

Top of Section; Previous Section (10); Next Section (12); Contents


[44] - Appendix 27.
[45] - Page 3
[46] - Page 3
[47] - Page 4
[48] - Page 4
[49] - Page 7
[50] - Pages 12-13
[51] - Page 51
[52] - Pages 64-65
[53] - Pages 64-65
[54] - Pages 74-75
[55] - Pages 72-73
[56] - Page 73
[57] - Page 3
[58] - Page 3, 5, 25-26, 35-39
[59] - Pages 13-14
[60] - Pages 29-30.
[61] - Page iii, 4
[62] - Page iii
[63] - Page iv
[64] - Page 17
[65] - Pages 32- 35
[66] - Page 56
[67] - Page 43
[68] - Page 43
[69] - Page 66
[70] - Page 67, 72
[71] - Page 74
[72] - Pages 74-76
[73] - Pages 12-13
[74] - Page 46
[75] - Page 47
[76] - Page 7
[77] - Page 13
[78] - Page 20
[79] - Page 53
[80] - Page 53
[81] - Page 66
[82] - Page 9
[83] - Page 55
[84] - Appendix 28.
[85] - Appendix 29.
[86] - Appendix 30
[87] - Appendix 31.

©Philip Kolvin