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Response to Consultations on the revised regulations for Greenwich Park
Response to Consultations on the revised regulations for Greenwich Park
This is the response from the Friends.
Thank you for inviting the Friends of Greenwich Park (FOGP) to respond to your consultation concerning changes to the Royal Parks Regulations. The Committee members have considered the proposals and have the following comments.
Q1 and Q2: Changes to speed limits in Hyde, Regent’s, St James’s and Green Park. These are outside our remit and therefore we have no comment.
Q3 and Q4: Increase of parking charges in Greenwich park from 30p to 35p per 15 minutes, Monday to Saturday:, from 30p to 60p per 15 minutes on Sundays and Bank Holidays. Any increase in parking charges is unwelcome. For weekdays the increase of 5p per quarter hour, 20p per hour is an increase of 17%, which, when spread over 8 years, represents 2% a year. This is, as you say, a little less than the RPI. The new charge is also competitive with some charges on streets near the Park, though some streets allow parking for 2 hours without charge. The Committee reluctantly accepts the weekday increase. Members are, however, against the 100% increase for Sundays and Bank Holidays. FOGP acknowledge that there is pressure on car parking spaces in Greenwich Park on Sundays, especially on warm, dry, summer days. However, we feel that this increase is against the spirit of the recently successful Stage 1 HLF bid which, inter alia, contained a commitment to encourage the use of the park by the wider community. This enjoyment is likely to be felt mostly at the weekend when families come by car to enjoy the pleasures of the Park. Often families come from different directions to meet up for picnics lasting several hours. Car parking will already be a significant charge to many of them, and a doubling of this cost may be sorely felt. As you know, FOGP arranges Jazz in the Park (at a cost to members) on one Sunday a year, and sponsors Bandstand concerts on 10 other days, mainly Sundays. We believe the proposed new level of charges - £9.60 for the 4 hour maximum stay – will deter attendance at these functions. For the Jazz event, if prices were raised, we might have to consider seeking a reduced charge for a special one-day permit (rather than the 4 hour limit) for those who buy concert tickets in advance. To be frank, the timing of this demand for finance through car parking charges sits very uneasily with having just been allocated over £280,000 of development funds for an eventual £4.800,000 (£4.8 million) to be spent on Greenwich Park.
Q5 and Q6: Introduction of ticketless and cashless payments for car parking. The Committee of the friends welcome the facility to make payments by phone or credit card, but is strongly against the removal of the ability to make payments by cash. While the use of cash in parking machines is reducing, it is by no means being abandoned. Many people, especially of the older generation, or those with low resources, still wish to use cash. They often find using cards, even if they have them, difficult. They can be uncertain that payment has been accepted, and thus that they can enjoy the Park without worry. Using the telephone is often frustrating when unable to get through. It is these people, and those who work less than full time, who make greater, more frequent use of the Park and who therefore will feel the inconvenience more keenly. Please retain the facility to pay by cash. In stark contrast to the proposed ticketless/cashless regime, all parking pay stations in the roads surrounding the Park - and indeed across the whole borough - accept cash as well as phone payment. This firmly reinforces the argument for maintaining the cash option, in the Park of all places. We are aware that Westminster and Camden councils have ticketless parking only, which may have influenced the blanket “one size fits all” proposal.
Q7, Q8 and Q9: Clarification concerning the use of drones, barbeques and fireworks. The Friends support the proposals of these minor drafting amendments.
Q10: Any other comments. The Committee have none.
Changes to Park Regulations
The Royal Parks would like to hear your views on some proposed amendments to The Royal Parks Regulations. The full consultation paper can be found here. In summary, the suggested amendments include:
- Introduction of a 20 mph speed limit for motor vehicles in Hyde Park, The Regent’s Park, St James’s Park and The Green Park. This does not affect Greenwich Park as the speed limit is already 20 mph
- Increase in parking charges in all public car parks in Hyde Park, The Regent’s Park and Greenwich Park, in the last of those from 60p per 15 minutes, Monday to Saturday, to 70p per 15 minutes, and from 35p per 15 minutes on Sunday to 70p per 15 minutes.
- Introduction of ticketless and cashless payments for car parking, with the removal of an opportunity to pay by cash.
- Amendments to clarify the intention of some existing regulations, for instance to make it explicit that drones are prohibited outside designated areas without written permission, and that barbeques and fireworks are not allowed to be lit in the Royal Parks without written permission.
If you wish to comment, feedback can be given by emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org or by writing to: Consultation - Regulations Review, The Royal Parks, The Old Police House, Hyde Park, London W2 2UH. Comments must be received by Thursday 12 April 2018. If you wish, you may also send your comments to Friends of Greenwich Park – Tony Butler, 19 Maidenstone Hill, London SE10 8SY, email@example.com
Any change to The Royal Parks Regulations requires Parliamentary consent and will be subject to the pressures of the Parliamentary timetable.
Advice during adverse snowy weather
Due to the adverse weather, we would advise people visiting or travelling through the Royal Parks to take caution.
Please be aware of the following safety measures/closures:
- It may be necessary to close areas of the parks, roads or footpaths for safety reasons.
- We advise people to avoid cycling.
- Playgrounds in all parks have been closed.
- Small catering kiosks may close (however indoor cafes and restaurants will be open but with reduced operating times).
Greenwich Park Birdwalk Sunday 28 January 2018
First birdwalk of the year on a chilly but refreshing morning and a small group of 4 of us, all with some knowledge.
The birds seemed to be fairly active and we started off on the preferred route around the pond area in the hope of seeing a good mix of birds to start with. The usual mix of a large number of Carrion Crows, plenty of Parakeets being noisy and boisterous, a small number of Jackdaws, along with a good number of feral Pigeons and Wood Pigeons were all seen on our entrance to the pond area. A Jay flew over the pond onto a nearby bush. We spotted a Mallard sitting in a tree and saw several others flying over. 2 Moorhens were happily nibbling on the grass. Blue Tits and Great Tits were flitting about amongst the bushes and shrubbery - a couple of Great Tits being very brave took advantage of some mealworms being offered on outstretched hands. A Song Thrush could be heard very clearly in the nearby shrubbery although not visible. Robins were seen and heard at various points around the pond and in the woodland area, as were Blackbirds.
On the pond: there were a lot of male and female Mallards and Rosybill Pochards, common Pochards and Moorhens were all seen along with feral Pigeons at the observation/feeding end of the pond.
We stopped by the smaller end of the Deer enclosure where 3 Mallards (2 male and 1 female) were using the wildlife pond in the enclosure. In the distance the Red deer Stag could be seen. We heard the distant drumming of a Great Spotted Woodpecker and Magpies, Carrion Crows and Parakeets were all flying about and making their presence known.
We made our way around to the bigger more open end of the deer enclosure and were treated to a very close view of 2 Nuthatches on the fence feeder. We clearly heard the “laugh” of the Green Woodpecker although it wasn’t seen. A couple of Stock Doves were on top of one of the nearby trees in the enclosure. The Wood Pigeons and Magpies and Parakeets were flying around. An Egyptian Goose calmly wandered into view on the open grass in the middle of the enclosure. An enormous bumble bee was bumbling around having been roused by the early spring-like morning.
On the walk through the woodland to the flower garden, feral Pigeons and Wood Pigeons were shuffling around on the ground, joined by squirrels.
The other birdwatchers had to leave at this point, so I continued through the flower garden spotting a couple of male Blackbirds having a scrap on the grass while a female Blackbird remained away from the commotion amongst the flower border. Robins, feral Pigeons, Great Tits and Blue Tits were all seen on the walk through and I spotted a Wren briefly in the shrubs.
ThIn the last part of the walk alongside Rangers House and through the rose garden many Robins, Blackbirds, Great Tits could be heard and sometimes seen amongst the shrubs and trees.
(22 species seen/heard): Carrion Crow, Jackdaw, Jay, Magpie, Parakeet, Mallard, Rosybill Pochard, common Pochard, Moorhen, Egyptian Goose, Great Tit, Blue Tit, Robin, Blackbird, Green Woodpecker, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Feral Pigeon, Wood Pigeon, Wren, Stock Dove, Nuthatch, Songthrush,.
e walk through to the observatory garden was quiet apart from the odd Wood Pigeon.
Greenwich Park Revealed
Greenwich Park is a giant step closer to receiving a multi-million pound investment for Greenwich Park Revealed, a project to uncover its hidden historical gems and enhance its stunning natural environment for generations to come, reveals The Royal Parks charity today.
The Royal Parks has applied for a grant of £4.8M through the Parks for People scheme, jointly funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) and Big Lottery Fund (BIG).
The charity has successfully been awarded development funding to work up proposals over the next eighteen months, and then invited to submit a Phase 2 application to secure the full £4.8M grant.
Greenwich Park Revealed will enable The Royal Parks charity, which manages the 183-acre park, to conserve and improve the World Heritage Site and Grade 1 Listed landscape for the 4.8 million people who visit every year.
Loyd Grossman CBE, Chairman of The Royal Parks Board, said: “Greenwich Park is London’s oldest enclosed Royal Park and this award will help restore and conserve the Grade 1 listed landscape as well as provide outstanding new visitor facilities. I am grateful to all of our partners who have supported us in putting together this visionary project and I look forward to continuing to work with them to deliver this transformation.”
Cllr Denise Hyland, Leader of the Royal Borough of Greenwich, said: “This is not only marvellous news for the many people from around London, the UK and the rest of the world who visit the park, but also for residents of the Royal Borough of Greenwich for whom Greenwich Park is a much loved local jewel.”
The investment will conserve and enhance the natural environment, uncover historical gems within the 590-year-old park and develop community projects for a growing and diverse local audience.
The plans include proposals which aim to:
Revive historical features from Andre Le Notre’s original 17th century baroque design for the park. Among the ideas are restoring the park’s ancient tree avenues which have been affected by disease and are at risk of disappearing within a few decades if no action is taken.
Reinstate the Edwardian landscape at the Flower Garden and Wilderness Park to its original glory including improving water quality in the lake, providing better views of the deer and providing refuges for nesting birds. These areas are especially popular with local residents and families with young children.
More opportunities for the local community to get involved with the park, including through events and education programmes for local schools, volunteer and apprenticeship placements, and work experience opportunities for students studying tourism, leisure and event management.
Improve visitor facilities including story boards bringing to life the historical and natural story of the park, improved refreshment facilities, toilets, viewing points and better access across the park for those with disabilities, helping all visitors enjoy one of London’s finest green spaces.
Graham Dear, Greenwich Park Manager, said: “We’re delighted to be a step closer to securing this crucial investment.
“Our top priority is to make sure Greenwich continues to be the local community park for nearby residents and families, but we also want our millions of visitors to have a fantastic experience.
“Some of the natural and historical features in this unique park are tucked away or hidden. And we want to bring them out of the shadows. This grant will allow us to provide a park that millions of visitors can enjoy now – and for the next 100 years.
“Our next task is to build on the proposals we’ve submitted, and we look forward to a successful final result in the months to come.”