This article was published in the Autumn/Winter 2016 edition of London Landscapes. I was especially pleased that the editor, Susan Miles, chose some of my images to use alongside those by Joel Antunes.
Declaring London the first National Park City would send a strong message to Londoners, and to the rest of the world. Here’s why we should make it happen.
Pocket gardens, pocket parks, urban greening and green space in general are all incredibly topical. As with so much else at present, it feels as though the pieces making up the future of our green spaces have been thrown up into the air, and that those pieces are still swirling. It’s not yet clear how they will fall: on the one hand, funding for parks continues to be cut, but on the other, ideas like the Greater London National Park City initiative are gaining ground.
Community projects are seen by many as part of the way forward. I have written in earlier posts about working with Streatham Common Common Co-operative and the West Norwood Bzz Garage, and earlier this year I joined forces with an amazing group of people to create a new pocket park in a built-up area of south east London.
This is the story of that space – the Tritton Vale Pocket Garden – as told on the excellent Richly Evocative blog. For updates, see the Tritton Road Facebook page. Several of us share the job of keeping this updated, and it has turned out be essential to the life of the project: we use it to raise funds and working parties, celebrate successes and thank the many people and organisations that make up a project community reaching far beyond geographic proximity.