The project, which before Covid-19 was due to start in 2020 and is now planned for 2021, is possible thanks to a ‘transformational’ £4.5m grant from The National Lottery Heritage Fund and The National Lottery Community Fund which are both supported by the country's National Lottery players. Their grant will help to protect and future-proof this unique heritage site, which is eroding under the pressure of a growing population. The Royal Parks and other funding partners will also contribute to the project, which we hope will bring the total investment to £10.5m, subject to funding.
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What Greenwich Park Revealed entails
Throughout 2017, 2018 and 2019 we appointed new staff, piloted a range of activities and talked to park users to get their feedback on the project before putting in a bid for external funding.
After securing a £4.5m grant in January 2020 the project was due to begin in earnest, with a new Learning Centre an important part of the plans for the park. New timescales are currently being worked out due to the delays caused by the pandemic.
The Greenwich Park Revealed project will cater for the ancient park's growing and diverse local population and will future-proof it for generations to come. It will:
- Return the park’s eroded historic landscape to its 17th century glory. This includes reinstating The Giant Steps which frame the dramatic view from The Royal Observatory, and replanting diseased and dying sections of the magnificent historic tree avenues, recreating the original Baroque designs created by Charles II.
- Build a state-of the art, eco-friendly Learning Centre in an underused service yard, generating completely new green space for public use, overlooking the historic deer park. The Learning Centre will provide a new community hub, offering learning and wellbeing experiences through training, volunteering, events and activities, with paid horticulture pre-apprenticeships and work experience for local students. It will incorporate a new café, inclusive public toilets, a meeting place and an information point for park users.
- Provide better access across the park for people with disabilities, including investment in a mobility scheme to help people visit different areas of the park.
- Enhance the park for wildlife by improving the Wilderness Park with better views of the deer and a new wildlife pond, and by planting scrub for nesting birds and conserving wild grasslands.
- Enhance the Flower Garden with wildlife-friendly planting in keeping with its formal, Edwardian design, improving the lake and adding natural play features for children.
- Improve sustainability through increased recycling, reconnecting historic fountains with drinking water to discourage bottled water use, and using ground water to irrigate trees and improve water quality in the lakes.
- Create new interpretation to unveil the dramatic story of London's most historic park.