The north edge of Millfields is one of the least-loved-looking bits of the park. For several months the committee has been working on ideas about this, and we tried to consult about some of them at our stall in the park in June — a plan which was a bit sabotaged by the incredibly unseasonable cold, wet weather that day. Still, we distributed some information about ideas, and had some useful comments from users. We also publicised and discussed ideas at the fun day on 21 August. At the group meeting on 17 September we hope the group will be able to make some decisions.
Ø The Casimir Road entrance looks unloved & unwelcoming.
Ø Grass doesn’t grow or look good in the shade of the big plane trees by the playground.
Ø Tarmac near the trees is damaged by the strong roots
Ø The abandoned paddling pool is an eyesore
Ø The kiosk and toilets are enclosed in the playground, not accessible to other park users
Ø The path along the north edge is in bad condition and bordered by an ugly metal fence
Ø The north-east (towpath) entrance is a mess
Ø Casimir Road by the gate is now motor-free. Remove the vehicle gate, and echo the footway paving in the park entrance, pulling the pedestrianised street into the park.
Ø Replace scraggy grass and lumpy tarmac with a clay/gravel surface, French park style, where people can stroll, sit, or play.
Ø Break the pool surface into hardcore: lay a new surface suitable for a social area – a plaza (see State of Play, 23 July)
Ø Add benches, chess table, tennis table, etc, under the trees and in the new ‘plaza’.
Ø Realign the playground fence so that the kiosk is at least partly outside it (see State of Play, 23 July).
Ø Reposition the north side path inside the tree line
Ø Plant along the north fence to hide it
Ø Latham’s yard section 106 funds: £45,000 for north side. Not enough to fix the path, says LBH, but enough to improve the entrance.
Ø ‘Walk England’ funds: LBH obtained £10K for the north-east end which had to be spent by the end of summer 2011. We were expecting to be consulted about its use but they’ve now (8 Sept) gone ahead without that: “The resurfacing works will match the treatment which has been undertaken along the river in North Millfields, tarmac with a gravel scree. We will also be looking at replacing the bin in that location with a more suitable version.”
There is no funding allocated to the other ideas yet. There is about £200,000 in the kitty from National Grid’s ‘rent’, with another £100K to come by 2014 (see our Funds page). Would this be a good way to spend it? Please come to the meeting, and/or comment here.