Friends of Ruskin Park have announced that, following public consultation in June and July, playground refurbishment works will begin on the 18th September and last for approximately 12 weeks. Lambeth Council will be responsible for these works.
Some small design changes have been made in response to feedback.
The Lambeth statement reads:
“The new playground will feature all new exciting and challenging play equipment, safety surfacing, interactive and imaginative play for all ages and abilities.
Following public consultation during June and July the design has been revised to:
include a replacement for the very popular trampoline
install additional benches (including some with backs)
incorporate more natural materials (including wooden benches
incorporate planting for shade around the perimeter
reuse equipment at other sites where possible.
We also received positive feedback on the proposals for the landscaping in front of the kiosk and eastern entrance. There will be a further update when these proposals have been finalised.
If you have any questions please contact project manager Rob Kelly .”
Lambeth are planning to introduce a Dog Control Public Spaces Protection Order. A consultation is in progress but – apologies – I have only just heard about this and the consultation closes tomorrow, Sunday 26 March.
I guess this will be welcomed by most dog owners and park users who have seen that dog walkers often have too many dogs to care for and sometimes lose control.
There is also an explicit warning on dog fouling and penalties for owners who permit this.
The rules would extend to all public places in Lambeth including roads and pavements.
Four’s Your Max
One element of the PSPO proposal is that maximum number of dogs a person can be in charge of is four. An exemption will be in place to allow any official licensed commercial dog walks to continue walking up to six dogs.
In addition they propose that there should be no more than two dogs off their lead at any one time.
The consultation details are online, and there is a survey which residents are invited to complete. If you agree, or want to suggest amendments, why not do do today?
As always, of course, the challenge will be enforcement.
Recent years have seen announcements about the redevelopment of Brockwell Hall, and news of a Lottery Grant of £3.3 million towards the overall cost of the project, which would probably exceed £6 million.
The plan is for Lambeth Council (who own the Hall) to fund the difference, with the Hall aiming to become commercially viable, if probably not fully self-sufficient. There is a full report in the excellent article by our neighbour Laurence Marsh in the centre pages of the most recent ‘Herne Hill’ magazine.
Most of the Hall at the moment is inaccessible to the public, but the cafe – modest though it is – is popular as a place of meeting and refreshment for park users. The future franchise for the operation of the cafe will probably be open to bidders, and one interested party has already started to canvass the park users’ views of what we would like the cafe to offer. We are grateful to our friends in the Brixton Forum for directing us to this survey. It is easy and quick to complete.
Take the survey
Undoubtedly many people on our street are users of the Brockwell Hall cafe and will have views about what a future replacement might look like. If you want to contribute to the survey, click here.
The Friends of Ruskin Park have circulated an update of their programme of summer and autumn concerts at the bandstand.
It can be found here. This Sunday features the South London Jazz Orchestra from 3:00 to 5:00 pm.
Paddling Pool has temporarily closed for urgent maintenance
Unfortunate timing but the paddling pool had to be drained today, Friday 12th August due to the jets being blocked.
Volunteers are working hard with Lambeth Council to resolve the issues, which are made worse by the extreme weather. They’re not currently able to say if the pool will be open over the weekend but will keep us updated
The popular paddling pool in Ruskin Park is reopening for the summer holidays, the Friends of Ruskin Park have just announced.
The paddling pool should be open again on 24th July until 5th September. The pool is run by volunteers, backed by a community partnership of Urban Village Homes, Lambeth Landscapes, and the Friends of Ruskin Park.
A full refurb for the pool is planned at the end of the year.
If you are able to volunteer with cleaning and other tasks, please see details here or join the Save Ruskin Park Paddling Pool group on Facebook.
The Friends of Ruskin Park are an outstanding local charity and play a vital role in keeping the park a vibrant and much treasured asset. In recent months their highly valued Treasurer very sadly died and they are desperately looking for someone to replace him. Obviously with any charity, particularly this one, it’s a vital role. They are struggling now with governance/finance know-how to meet their minimum commitments as an entirely volunteer run charity.
They are looking for a person with some accountancy experience, maybe with charities, and who is a supporter of what they do for Ruskin Park. This is an important and rewarding voluntary contribution to our local community and it will need regular commitment.
On top of that, the committee’s vice-chair has also stepped down recently for health reasons. That’s another post that needs to be filled as soon as possible.
If you are able and willing to help, or know anyone else who might, please contactthe Chair, Lucy Hadfield.
It’s the nearly concert season in Ruskin Park
When summer and sunny days return (they will, won’t they?), the bandstand in Ruskin Park fulfils its purpose as a showcase for musical entertainment on Sunday afternoons.
The first concert is on 4th July (3:00 – 5:00 PM), with an appearance by The Sonnet Wind Orchestra – a musically exciting ensemble numbering some 35 players. Mostly retired professional musicians playing an extensive and eclectic repertoire from arrangements of classical favourites, via selections from stage and screen, to the Beatles, Bowie and Queen. Many of these arrangements are by members of the SWO.
More concerts follow, right until the middle of October. The summer programme can be found on the Friends of Ruskin Park website.
We understand via the Herne Hill Safer Neighbourhood Panel that a frighteningly large quantities of discarded needles/syringes are strewn about in Brockwell Park, according to local residents with children that play in there.
They are mostly concentrated within the bushes, where children naturally like to run about in and play. To describe the quantities as ‘scores’ is no exaggeration, we hear.
Our Police Community Support Officers do excellent and effective work in knife and weapon searches, often finding needles etc., but the police are not caretakers and cleaners. Dealing with the needles is a specialised job with Health and Safety implications and the Council, with financial support from central government, possibly via the Mayor’s Office, to make this possible, needs to address this issue. People are recalling a case in 1992 when a 7-year-old found such a needle having unknowingly pricked herself on it. Fortunately, hospital tests gave her full clearance but it could so easily have been a different outcome.
The relevant local councillors in Lambeth have been made aware of this situation, but any parents with children likely to visit the park should perhaps be conscious of the risk and keep an eye on where the children are venturing.
We can still comment on Lambeth’s application for a performance/food/drink pop-up on and around the Ruskin Park bandstand this summer. But Wednesday 10 March is the cut-off date.
The performances and other events would happen 5 days a week including evenings and weekends all through spring to autumn (29 April – 12 September 2021), presumably blocking off the long-established summer weekend concerts traditionally organised by the Friends of Ruskin Park (FoRP).
The Friends’ explanation and comments can be read on their website here. Others might think, on the contrary, that this is all a wonderful idea.
There’s a natural tendency in Lambeth Council (as in others, probably) to assume that “no comment”/silence = either approval or indifference.
So if we feel something is wrong (or right!) it could make sense to take five minutes to feed back our comments. Lord knows, it doesn’t always make a difference but if we stay silent when things we don’t approve of look like happening, we can’t really complain afterwards if they do. End of homily.
News about Fawnbrake Avenue & neighbouring streets in Herne Hill, London