Councillor Assures Residents South Park is Not for Sale

But Friends group still have major concerns

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Councillor Frances Stainton

Friends of South Park

South Park at Risk from Council Sale Plan

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Following recent alarm from the Friends of South Park about Hammersmith and Fulham Council's plans for its future, Councillor Francis Stainton has written an open letter to local residents with the promise that the park is " not for sale and never will be ".

Councillor Stainton,who is Hammersmith and Fulham's Cabinet Member for Parks, Culture and Heritage, says in her letter:

" You may have seen posters and leaflets around South Park suggesting that the park is for sale. I am writing to assure you that this is not true.

" As many of you will know, we have, over the last eight months, been consulting local residents on options for the future development and improvement of the park. Selling off the park is not, and never will be an option.

" As part of the consultation, we have looked at many options and ideas for raising funds to improve the park. It was recognised that this masterplan could not be undertaken without the necessary funding in place. This is the reason the masterplan has set out a timescale of up to ten years for completion. With 63 parks and open spaces to care for, and with great pressures on public spending, finances are tight.

" One of the options we have considered was selling the disused Clancarty Lodge. It was clear from the consultation, that some residents do not currently favour this option.

" Without this sale to support funding, some aspects of the master plan for the park cannot
now be implemented. In the short term, however, we will be pushing ahead with those
improvements we have funding for, while pursuing other options for future funding, perhaps
from grants or other external sources.

" These include:

• Replace and introduce new shrub and herbaceous planting over three year period;
• Introduce new cricket nets for practice;
• Construct new all weather multi use games pitch, subject to external funding confirmation."

" Parks are a hugely important asset and our record on supporting and improving them stands
for itself. For the first time, we now have Green Flag awards for three of our parks, a number
of highly-valued park friends groups, and we have seen major park improvement projects
right across the borough as part of our Cleaner, Greener programme.

" South Park is a hugely important open space for people living in the area and we will
continue to do whatever we can to preserve and improve it for future generations. I
would like to thank all those who have contributed ideas during the consultation and
look forward to your continued support in getting the most we can out of the funding
available.

" If you have any further questions or comments, please contact Rob Kelly, Parks Development Manager, Residents Services Parks and Culture, First Floor, 77 Glenthorne Road, Hammersmith, London W6 0LJ, or telephone 020 8753 2292, or email rob.kelly@lbhf.gov.uk.

" Yours sincerely,
Cllr Frances Stainton
Cabinet Member for Parks, Culture and Heritage."

The Friends of South Park have responded swiftly to the councillor's letter. Says Chairman Anthony Williams: " We welcome the confirmation that some short term funding is available for South Park, and that the Council will be pursuing other options for future funding.  

" However, the letter does not specifically state that a sale of Clancarty Lodge and the north west corner has been abandoned, which has been a major concern. There are also many other outstanding issues surrounding the master plan and the restoration of the park that the Council does not mention.  

" We strongly believe that we need to make our members and other friends of South Park fully aware of the current situation.   Monday evening's open meeting at 7pm at Thomas's School in Hugon Road therefore remains even more important and we hope all members, their friends and neighbours will attend."

 

November 27, 2009 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

November 27, 2009

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