Update  Beckenham Place Park Festival  15 August 2017
Following our objection to Beckenham Place Park’s application for a premises licence, the licensing authority have refused this application. Their reasons for refusal are that the application did not satisfy the full requirements required in the Licensing Act 2003.

They have advised the applicant of its refusal and advised them they will need to re-apply in full. This will mean new blue notices and newspaper adverts will need to be resubmitted, and our current objection will not be relevant to any new application.

They have asked the applicant still to go ahead with the planned meeting on 14 September 2017, as they feel this will be beneficial for both parties.

Please see the following documents:
  • RVPS comments on the proposed conditions for the proposed Beckenham Place Park premises licence
  • latest version of the conditions
Open House at Beckenham Place Park  6 August 2017
The mansion and the stableyard will be part of Open House London on 17 September 2017. Alison Taylor, Project Manager of Regeneration and Asset Management at the London Borough of Lewisham, is asking if anyone would like to get involved in volunteering at the event – either as a tour guide or a steward.

It will be a great day when the mansion is fully open to the public. People can come into the stableyard and have a look at the buildings as they are now pre- restoration, and enjoy period music, participating in making a community sampler and learn a bit about life in the early 1800s, with a re-enactment group in the park too. 

If you are able to volunteer as a steward or tour guide, please let Alison Taylor know. Tour guides training will be on Wednesday 13 September 2017 at 6.30 p.m.

Update  Beckenham Place Park Festival  30 July 2017
Lewisham Council have agreed a set of conditions and plan of the parkwhich will be attached to the licence. The background to this is as follows.

On 12 July 2017, we sent our objections to the application by Greenscene, Lewisham's parks department, for new / variation of premises licence for Beckenham Place Park to Lewisham Council:

I am writing on behalf of Ravensbourne Valley Preservation Society, an organisation with nearly 500 members, many of whose houses are close to Beckenham Place Park.

Although not opposed in principle to the application for a new Premises licence in respect of the park, we have a number of concerns, detailed below, and would like to have these concerns considered and relevant conditions imposed should the licence be granted by the licencing committee.

Suggested conditions to apply to the events licence

  • Maximum daily attendance should be limited to 5000 (not maximum attendance of 5000 at any one time)
  • A robust ticketing system should be mandated to ensure maximum not breached
Event Management
  • All events of 500 or more people must have an event management plan. The scope and contents of these plans should be agreed before the granting of the licence.
  • Toilet facilities in the park are inadequate even for current usage. In addition to temporary facilities to be installed for events we believe there should be additional permanent facilities especially in view of the likely increased daily usage which will result from the park becoming better known as a consequence of anticipated events. 
Number of events
  • No more than four events per year with an expected attendance of between 1000 and 5000 people should be allowed
  • No more than 12 events per year with an expected attendance of up to 1000 people should be allowed
  • An area outside of which amplified sound must not be played should be specified (to ensure that neighbours are not inconvenienced by excessive noise)
  • Peak and average sound level at the perimeter of the park which sound levels will not exceed should be specified
  • Total time of amplified sound per event should be no more than 3 hours
  • All events should have sound monitoring equipment available to ensure compliance with the above
Traffic management
  • For all events over 500 people, Bromley Town Ward and Beckenham Ward councillors, Friends of BPP, Copers Cope Residents Association, Ravensbourne Valley Preservation Society and local police must be consulted regarding traffic management.
  • A specimen traffic management plan must be supplied showing how traffic relating to 5000 people would be managed.
Timing of events
  • No noisy events on a Sunday
  • Amplified sound to cease by 10:30 PM
  • Amplified sound not to start before 9AM
  • Events with over a thousand attending to be no more than 8 hours in duration
  • No event before 9AM
  • No large event (>500 people) before 11AM on Sundays and Bank Holidays
Angela Mullin-Murrell, Lewisham's Crime, Enforcement & Regulations Officer, has now replied as follows:

Following your objection to the application for a premises licence at Beckenham Place Park I would like to update you on where we currently are.
We have agreed a set of conditions that will be attached to the licence and a plan of the park.
These conditions will apply to all events taking place in the park. You will see that at the top of the conditions we have activities (under 499) and events (499 and over).
This is because a lot of the activities the park may be used for have been deregulated and therefore would not require a licence.
All events will be taken to the Events Safety Advisory Group (ESAG). This is a multi-agency group, which considers and advises on all proposals for major events. ESAG normally meets to discuss any event over 5000 people but as this is a new licence all events over 499 people will be heard by ESAG.
The map attached is a draft but it shows that we have zoned the park. This will make it easier for us as an authority to make sure the events held in the park are held in the correct areas. We have agreed that Zone (I) which is on the west side of the park near to Beckenham Hill Road can have a licence until 23:00 hours on a Friday and Saturday. This area is proposed to be used for marquees which will hold private parties. Everywhere else in the park will have a licence until 22:00 hours.
There will be no events taking place within 75 meters of any boundary property and all amplified music will be monitored while events take place.
When events are advertised they will encourage all attendees to use public transport.
All events will be advertised on Lewisham Councils Website, Beckenham Place Park website and all notice boards within the park. 
There will be no more than 6 events with a capacity of over 2,500 per year.
I have received a lot of objections from residents who have said they need more information on this application and I hope this email will answer a lot of your questions.
If you have objected and now feel you would like to withdraw your objection please let me know.
If you would like further information please send me an email and I will do my best to answer any questions.
I am working from home today and if you require a call back please send me an email with your contact number and I will do my best to call you back.

Update  Lewisham and Catford flood alleviation scheme  11 July 2017
A decision has now been made on Bromley Council’s planning application ref. No. 17/02423/ADJ. No objection has been raised in principle with regard to the Lewisham consultation on the Request for Scoping Opinion submitted under Regulations 13 [sic] of the Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations (As Amended) 2015 in respect of a proposed flood alleviation scheme within the catchment of the River Ravensbourne.

The delegation report is available along with the decision. Whilst no objection is raised in principle to the current application, concern is raised from the Environmental Health Officer regarding the location of any emergency pumping equipment as well as the times and duration of testing. If any pumps are to be associated with diesel generators then an air quality assessment may be required. The Environment Agency should also be satisfied with these details.

Concerns have also been raised by Bromley residents, and these should be considered. The concerns are summarised by Bromley Council’s planning department as follows:
  • General support raised however consultation has been requested for embankment works and concern raised in regard to the access point and possible noise and anti-social behaviour as a result of the cycle track.
  • Possible damage to highway during construction. Damage should not be paid for by residents and highway could be adopted.
  • Vehicle access to fields should be prevented to avoid fly tipping. Existing river bed should be retained to assist this.
  • Planting should be used to prevent overlooking as a result of the raising of the bank.
  • Boardwalks across wetlands should have sufficient protections from falling to allow young children to walk to the playground.
  • Parking in nearby roads should not be negatively affected by either use or construction traffic.
Beckenham Place Park Festival  10 July 2017
Lewisham Council are applying for a premises licence in order to hold events for up to 5000 people at Beckenham Place Park. This raises some very serious issues for nearby residents. A copy of the application is available on the Beckenham Forum.

This licence is extremely broad. Theoretically, any number of major events could be held during the year, at any time between 00:01 and 23:00. Clearly this is unacceptable and possible representations to the Licensing Authority to restrict the activities to reasonable levels are under discussion.

Anyone wishing to oppose the application must give notice in writing to Licensing Services, London Borough of Lewisham, Licensing Authority, Holbeach Office, 9 Holbeach Road, London SE6 4TW or e-mail licensing@lewisham.gov.uk within four weeks of the date of this notice, that is by 12 July 2017, specifying the grounds of opposition. The application and register can also be viewed at the above address during office hours. 

 Lewisham and Catford flood alleviation scheme  3 June 2017
Lewisham Planning Application No. DC/17/101619 received 4 May 2017 purports to be a Request for Scoping Opinion submitted under Regulations 13 [sic] of the Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations (As Amended) 2015 in respect of a proposed flood alleviation scheme within the catchment of the River Ravensbourne, comprising of:
  • works to raise low points in existing river walls between Ladywell and Lewisham town centre;
  • the formation of a floodwater storage area within Ladywell Green (land bounded by Slagrove Place, SE13);
  • the realignment of the River Ravensbourne and formation of a flood storage area at Beckenham Place Park, BR3, together with associated structures and landscaping works.
The scoping report and main document relating to Site 12: Beckenham Place Park are available. All of the documents relating to the application are available at the Lewisham Planning website.
The closing date for comments is 14 June 2017. Unfortunately Lewisham Planning failed to respond to our request to notify us when the application was made, but it has been logged by Bromley Council as Planning Application Ref. No. 17/02423/ADJ received on 24 May 2017.

Update  Beckenham Place Park planning applications – 19 May 2017
The planning application, ref. No. DC/16/097594, relating to Lewisham Council’s proposals to improve Beckenham Place Park, and specifically the construction of a community BMX cycling facility comprising a limestone grit track, landscaped grass mounds and a temporary storage unit, has been granted. The decision is available.

Update  Lewisham and Catford flood alleviation scheme  12 April 2017
A January 2017 communication from the Environment Agency on the flood alleviation scheme reads as follows:

Works we’re proposing which would reduce the risk of flooding to Lewisham and Catford. You may already be familiar with our proposals via my colleague Richard Peddie, or following the public consultation that we carried out in the summer of 2014, when the scheme was at an earlier stage of development.

We are now starting to undertake detailed design and there will be another public consultation this summer when there will be a further opportunity to see the latest proposals and influence the design.

The reason for contacting you now is that contractors working on our behalf will be at various sites close to the river Ravensbourne over the next month to check ground conditions. Please see the attached briefing notes for more information. One gives general background about the scheme, and the other provides some details about the ground investigation works.

See also the latest newsletter of the the Friends of Beckenham Place Park. This includes an article from Alison Taylor, Lewisham’s Project Manager, with further information on how the flood alleviation scheme is progressing, as well as on tree planting. It also includes an interesting feature on the history of the park.

Mansion House at Beckenham Place Park – 23 February 2017
There’s a new webpage at:

From this month, they are aiming to have the snug open seven days a week until 3 p.m. as it becomes home to a series of pop-up cafés which will offer a range of food and drink options and change every twelve weeks or so. They are also looking for artists to take on some studios on the first floor of the mansion from the beginning of March.

Upcoming events include:
  • Every Saturday, 9 a.m.: Beckenham Place Parkrun - walk, jog or run in the beautiful setting of our largest park. The run starts at the Ravensbourne Avenue entrance. 
  • 25 February 2017, 10 a.m.: woodland tree planting. Meet at the Mansion House steps.
Beckenham Place Park planning applications – 16 February 2017

There has been another recent planning application relating to Lewisham Council’s proposals to improve Beckenham Place Park:
  • Screening Opinion under Regulation 5 of the Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations 2011, as amended, in respect of the proposed regeneration of part (west of rail line) of Beckenham Place Park, Beckenham Hill Road, BR3 comprising of: the rebuilding and change of use of the stable block to include a café (A3) and education use (D1); alterations to and change of use of the Gardener's Cottage for volunteer use (D2); alterations to and refurbishment of Southend Lodge and extension of associated park depot, including the provision of new storage buildings; alterations to and refurbishment of the Gatehouse; demolition of park storage and toilet structures; excavation to provide a lake and wetland area with associated boardwalk areas; relocation and extension of car park; and extensive landscape works including re-contouring of land, re-surfacing of existing paths, provision of new paths, new street furniture, play and gym equipment, boardwalks, lighting, signage and boundary treatment; tree removal and new planting.
    Ref. No: DC/16/098117 | Received: Mon 19 Dec 2016 | Validated: Mon 19 Dec 2016
It includes a nice plan of the proposed lake.

The following documents from the file of the planning application for the proposed regeneration of the part of Beckenham Place Park, west of the railway line, ref. No: DC/16/099042, make interesting reading:
The second document (in part 2) includes a selection of maps of the area, both old and new. Greenwood's map of Kent from 1821 shows a number of notable properties in the Southend area, including Beckenham Place, Bromley Hall, Warren House and Plaistow Hall. Both documents are well illustrated, showing aspects of the park as it is now.

Beckenham Place Park gets £4.9m funding – 14 December 2016
Lewisham Council's bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund/Big Lottery Fund for £4.9m to regenerate Beckenham Place Park has been successful.

They will now press ahead with "ambitious plans to conserve and enhance Beckenham Place Park, attracting more people of all ages to visit the park and celebrate its cultural heritage and ecological importance". Read the full news story.

Beckenham Place Park Festival of Lights – 4 December 2016
The grand switching on of the lights and Christmas tree at the Mansion House at Beckenham Place Park was advertised for 4.15 p.m., so we turned up a few minutes later, camera in hand, hoping to record the scene. Unfortunately, we were informed that the whole thing had taken place earlier than advertised, and that they were no longer allowing admittance to the public. Thus anyone seeking a photographic record will have to look elsewhere.

Beckenham Place Park planning applications – 26 November 2016
There have been three recent planning applications relating to Lewisham Council’s proposals to improve Beckenham Place Park:
  • The proposed regeneration of part (west of rail line) of Beckenham Place Park, Beckenham Hill Road, BR3 comprising of: the rebuilding and change of use of the stable block to include a café (A3) and education use (D1); alterations to and change of use of the Gardener’s Cottage for volunteer use (D2); alterations to and refurbishment of Southend Lodge and extension of associated park depot, including the provision of new storage buildings; alterations to and refurbishment of the Gatehouse; demolition of park storage and toilet structures; excavation to provide a lake and wetland area with associated boardwalk areas; relocation and extension of car park; and extensive landscape works including re-contouring of land, re-surfacing of existing paths, provision of new paths, new street furniture, play and gym equipment, boardwalks, lighting, signage and boundary treatment; tree removal and new planting.
    Ref. No: DC/16/099042 | Received: Tue 08 Nov 2016 | Validated: Tue 22 Nov 2016

  • Listed Building Consent for the proposed rebuilding and conversion of the stable block at Beckenham Place Park, Beckenham Hill Road, BR3 to provide a cafe and education centre together with alterations to and refurbishment of Southend Lodge and the Gatehouse.
    Ref. No: DC/16/099043 | Received: Tue 08 Nov 2016 | Validated: Tue 22 Nov 2016

  • The construction of community BMX cycling facility comprising a limestone grit track, landscaped grass mounds and a temporary storage unit at Beckenham Place Park, BR1.
    Ref. No: DC/16/097594 | Received: Mon 18 Jul 2016 | Validated: Mon 19 Sep 2016
Mansion House at Beckenham Place Park – 19 November 2016
Sydney Thornbury, who has run the Conservatoire at Blackheath Halls and the Bussey Building in Peckham, has taken over the management of the building. She has plans for community use of the Mansion House. For now, she has arranged for complimentary tea and coffee to be available at the Mansion House for park visitors.

Sydney is running the building on a temporary basis following its vacation by Glendale Golf. This will ensure the building is kept secure and looked after while the first stage of restoration takes place in the park. You can follow Sydney on Twitter @bppmansion.

The building is still undergoing minor works so that it can be used more. Plans include artists' studios and exercise classes. During the works the visitor centre will continue to run on Sundays.

Lewisham Council have set up a new Facebook page to share information about the ongoing changes happening in Beckenham Place Park and to promote future events, activities and volunteering opportunities. Just 'like' the page to keep up with the park's progress.

On Sunday 4 December 2016, 1–4.30pm, a "free, fabulous, festive and fun event" will take place in the park. Activities include lantern-making, music, free mince pies, and a snow machine.

Closure of golf course in Beckenham Place Park – 10 November 2016
The golf course in Beckenham Place Park closed on 31 October 2016. It was operating at a loss of around £135,000 a year and, we are told, deterred "normal" park users from using the park.

The pages available on the Lewisham Council site on improving Beckenham Place Park have been updated accordingly. They now comprise:
Plans for trees in regeneration of Beckenham Place Park – 22 October 2016

These trees are now preventing views – across the park, of the mansion, and from the homesteads

Lewisham Council has plans for the trees in the regeneration of Beckenham Place Park. Transforming the park will involve tree management works:
  • New planting
  • Tree removal
  • Removing dead and diseased trees
    • Restoring views and removing inappropriate planting
    • Preserving and celebrating veteran trees
  • Memorial trees
A poster is available with details of the planned tree works in the park as part of the regeneration.

Update – Vision for Beckenham Place Park progresses – 2 October 2016
Lewisham Council confirmed on 21 September 2016 that plans to make Beckenham Place Park a place that the whole community can enjoy will take "a big leap forward" when the golf course, which takes up more than a third of the green space, closes on 31 October 2016.

Last year Lewisham Council won the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund for plans to attract many more visitors to enjoy many more activities at Beckenham Place Park. The golf course closure, they say, is an important step towards that aim.

A survey carried out in 2013 to understand how people use Beckenham Place Park concluded that, "the park appears to be underused". The reasons given in the survey included lack of attractions, presence of unusable and derelict features, a large area being out of bounds and the woodland being difficult to navigate.

To ensure the park is well used in the future Lewisham Council is working to address each of these issues.

Update – Beckenham Place Park: Heritage Lottery Fund statement – 16 September 2016
A statement on Beckenham Place Park is available from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) website. It is not very well written, but cites a report which confirmed that interactions between HLF and Lewisham Council in the lead up to the decision to close the golf course were appropriate. The report concluded that HLF’s view that the decision to close the golf course is one for the Council was reasonable.

With a bit of hunting around the following can be found on the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) website:

Update – Friends of Beckenham Place Park meeting – 7 September 2016
Lewisham Council has advised that the Friends of Beckenham Place Park are meeting to hear about how plans are progressing for the park’s regeneration. There will also be talks about events and activities in the park in the future. 
If you’d like to learn more about the plans for the park and contribute to the discussions, please come to the mansion at 7.30 p.m. on Tuesday 13 September 2016.

Update – Call for ideas: bringing Beckenham Place Park’s historic buildings back into use – 27 July 2016
Several historic buildings in the park are in need of significant investment but are not part of Lewisham Council's current bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund’s Parks for People grant programme. These buildings are an important part of Beckenham Place Park, and they are very keen to explore ideas for how they might be used to raise money, strengthen communities and enhance the park. 
The buildings are:
  • the Grade II* listed Mansion House
  • the Foxgrove Club
  • the remaining part of the homesteads.
They are calling for ideas about how these buildings can get a new lease of life and play a part in the new regenerated park. If you have financially viable ideas and you’d like to share them, you can find the information you need as well as key dates for submitting your ideas online. 
In just under a week’s time, Lewisham Council will be submitting their final application to the Heritage Lottery Fund’s Parks for People grant programme. Under the new plans, Beckenham Place Park will provide extensive new activities and facilities to a wider range of users and visitors. They expect to hear the Heritage Lottery’s Fund’s decision on the second round application early next year.

A further page is available on the Lewisham Council site on improving Beckenham Place Park:
The draft masterplan has been updated to the most recent version of this emerging masterplan. You can find more detailed designs in the documents below:
As the consultation progresses, and more information becomes available on costings, the design will continue to evolve.

Update – Consultation responses for Beckenham Place Park – 16 July 2016
Following the Mayor and Cabinet decision on 17 February 2016 to close the golf course by 31 December 2016, Lewisham Council asked for views on how the park should look and what sort of facilities should be on offer. They have summarised the main results from their separate consultations as follows:
  • There is widespread support overall for the regeneration of the park. The proposals are welcomed by a broad cross-section of the local community, while a minority of people will use the park less frequently following the regeneration.
  • Our plans to use the park for both large-scale and small events, with different themes, are backed by a majority of people.
  • Those we spoke to strongly welcome our plans to improve access to the park for walkers and disabled users. Most people approve of our attempts to relocate paths and car parks to ensure visitors can easily access facilities.
  • Our efforts to improve preservation of the park’s historic buildings, meeting places and facilities have attracted widespread encouragement from those we have spoken to.
  • Most of the people we consulted are keen for us to improve the information available within the park about its history and heritage – a key part of our regeneration plans.
  • Alongside plans to enhance preservation of the park’s historic features, our proposals for new play areas at both ends of the park have proved popular.
  • Our plans to substantially boost the educational value of the park have been well received by local schools, with a large number indicating that they would use the park for outdoor learning following the changes.
Further details of the consultation responses are available on their website.

According to the News Shopper, the All Party Parliamentary Group for Golf has lent its support to the golf course. HoweverLewisham Mayor Sir Steve Bullock has replied to the group, saying there has been a “marked reduction” in the use of the course which has resulted in residents subsidising a facility for a “small group of users”. He said: “We continue to develop plans to implement the changes which have already been agreed and see no reason to reconsider the decision.” Lewisham Council does not believe it fair that local taxpayers should continue to subsidise a dwindling number of local golfers who want to play here, especially when government cuts mean we have less to spend on their social care, street sweeping, libraries and other services.”

Update – Meeting notes from first local focus group – 23 March 2016
The Copers Cope Area Residents Association recently attended a focus group for the proposals to change Beckenham Place Park. A report is available on their website.

Discussion revolved around the following aspects:
  • Awareness of Beckenham Place Park
  • Character of the Park
  • Access
  • Interpretation
  • Buildings
  • General landscape
  • Biodiversity and woodlands
Overall the discussion group process provided a useful platform to discuss Beckenham Place Park, current use of the space and to talk about the opportunities for the future. The vast majority of respondents spoke very positively about the semi-natural character of the space and how this should be understood and conserved. Some participants agreed the park is underused and there was wider acceptance that marketing and promotion is poor.

Proposals to restore and enhance the buildings were widely supported across all participants. The Mansion was seen by many to be the main priority for investment across the park although proposals to restore the Homesteads (and the proposed uses) were typically well supported. The proposals for the landscape restoration were more mixed, which to a large degree, was a result of some participants opposing the closure of the golf course. However, many of the proposals were also widely supported with many participants excited by the opportunities to introduce new facilities and activities.

The discussion groups have also demonstrated that there is a high level of interest in the proposals for the future of Beckenham Place Park and there should be significant interest in the next stages of consultation.

Update – Consultation activities on Beckenham Place Park – 27 February 2016
Lewisham Council has secured a Round 1 pass from the Heritage Lottery Fund’s Parks for People programme. Draft proposals for the restoration and regeneration of the park and buildings have been developed and the Council would like to hear your views about these plans. The comments received will be used to inform the next stages of planning the project.

The plans will be available at a series of exhibitions and events over the coming weeks. The events will be staffed by members of the project team, who will be on hand to explain the proposals and to answer any questions you may have.

The programme of exhibitions is shown below.

Monday 29 February 2016 
9.30 a.m. – 12.30 p.m. 
Downham Library, 7–9 Moorside Road, Bromley BR1 5EP
Saturday 5 March 2016
11.00 a.m. – 3.00 p.m. 
Beckenham High Street, Beckenham BR3 1AH (outside Sainsbury's)
Wednesday 9 March 2016
1.00 p.m. – 6.00 p.m.
1415 Catford Broadway, London SE6 4SP (opposite Costa Coffee)
Sunday 13 March 2016
2.00 p.m. – 4.00 p.m.
Beckenham Place Park Mansion House (Visitor Centre), Beckenham BR3 5BP
Monday 14 March 2016
9.00 a.m. – 11.30 a.m. 
The Green Man, 355 Bromley Road, London SE6 2RP
Monday 14 March 2016
12 noon – 4.00 p.m.
Bellingham High Street, 14 Randlesdown Road, London SE6 3BU (shop next to the Post Office)
Thursday 17 March 2016
3.00 p.m. – 5.00 p.m. and 7.00 p.m. – 8.30 p.m.
Church Hall, Evangelical Church, Cromwell Road, Beckenham BR3 4LW
Monday 21 March 2016
6.00 p.m. – 9.00 p.m.
The Green Man, 355 Bromley Road, London SE6 2RP
Saturday 26 March 2016 (Easter Fun Day)
11.00 a.m. – 3.00 p.m.
Beckenham Place Park Mansion, Beckenham BR3 5BP
These exhibitions are being run as drop-in sessions, with the same plans and surveys available at each session. You do not need to confirm your attendance and these sessions are all open to the public. Therefore please pick a date, time and venue that are most convenient for you.
Further public consultation will be carried out later in the summer of 2016 prior to the submission of the final proposals to the Heritage Lottery Fund.
If you have any questions about these exhibitions please contact Neil Eccles of Community First Partnership. If you have any more general enquiries about the project please contact Alison Taylor, Project Manager, Lewisham Council by email or on 020 8314 8758.

Update – Consultation activities on Beckenham Place Park – 22 February 2016
The timetable on the Lewisham Council website is not telling us much, but it has been reported elsewhere that they took the decision last week to remodel Beckenham Place Park, the borough’s largest public open space, into someone’s idea of what it might have looked like in the 18th century, including creating a new lake.

Public consultation on the park’s designs to include events, public meetings, surveys, and work with young people to inform designs will now take place from ​mid-February to April 2016.

Update – Consultation activities on Beckenham Place Park – 12 December 2015
The timetable appears to have slipped. The ​Mayor and Cabinet are now expected to consider the report on the progress of the bid for Heritage Lottery Funding and the future of the golf course on 17 February 2016. Two more pages are available on the Lewisham Council site on improving Beckenham Place Park:
The first of these indicates why Foxgrove club wasn't allowed to remain open until the end of 2016. One question that remains unaddressed is the following from one of our residents and quoted by the News Shopper:

’Dogging’ in the car park - is this how you envisioned the future for what used to be a useful and valued community asset?

The draft masterplan includes a redrawn map. Curiously, the key no longer refers to the removal of the existing 18 hole golf course, for parkland restoration & historic view management, as quoted below, but has rephrased this as:

Parkland restoration and historic view management: native tree planting, restoration of 18th century parkland landscaping as setting to south of the Mansion House.

Update – Consultation activities on Beckenham Place Park – 20 November 2015
The following pages are available on the Lewisham Council site on improving Beckenham Place Park: 

In connection with consultation activities, Lewisham say they need to complete detailed design work for the improved Beckenham Place Park to submit the second stage bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund by August 2016. They are very keen to involve current and future users of the park in developing ideas for how the park might look and how it will be used. This is their plan for consultation and engagement activities and the outline timetable for the project:

​October to December 2015
​Consultation with stakeholders through meetings and focus groups
​November 2015
​Consultation with schools on outdoor education opportunities
​9 December 2015
​Mayor and Cabinet consider report on progress of bid for Heritage Lottery Funding and future of golf course

​If it is decided to proceed with the bid then consultation will continue in order to progress designs for the park. What follows is subject to the decision on 9 December 2015.

​January to April 2016
​Public consultation on the park’s designs to include events, public meetings, surveys, and work with young people to inform designs
​May to ​June 2016
​Design verification. Public displays and events
​​August 2016
​Submit final proposal to Heritage Lottery fund for approval
​By January 2017
​Secure funds from HLF
​January to Summer 2017
​Procurement and finalise detailed designs
​Autumn 2017
​Works on site begin
​By Christmas 2018
​Works completed
Anyone can get in touch with their views by e-mailing bpp@lewisham.gov.uk.

Update – Beckenham Place Park golf course – 18 March 2015
The News Shopper reports today that a golfer is standing to be his area's next MP in a bid to save inner London's only public golf course from being lost forever. "The Sydenham 66-year-old" David Hansom has announced he would be standing as an independent for Lewisham West and Penge in May's election on behalf of the Save the Beckenham 18 campaign.

Update – Beckenham Place Park golf course – 10 March 2015
The News Shopper reports that golfers including Nick Faldo are "coming out swinging" against Lewisham Council's plans to close inner London's only 18-hole public course. David Hansom from the Friends of Beckenham Place Park is quoted as saying, "If the course went, the chances are there'll be less people using the park."

Update – Beckenham Place Park golf course – 22 February 2015
We note that a public meeting re the threat to close Beckenham Place Park golf course organised by various golfers and non-golfers will take place on 24 February 2015 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Beckenham Cricket Club, Long Room, Foxgrove Road.

This follows further heated debate in the Daily Mail. One reader noted, "The councils don't care there all driving Porsche's".

Update – Beckenham Place Park golf course – 9 February 2015
In an article entitled "How will we get another McIlroy if we kill off golf's public courses?", Beckenham Place Park is featured in today's Daily Mail. The reference is to Rory McIlroy, MBE, a Northern Irish professional golfer from Holywood in County Down who is a member of both the European and PGA Tours. He is the current World Number One and a four-time major champion.

Update – river Ravensbourne bursts its banks – 25 November 2014
According to newspaper reports, around 1,800 square metres of the area around Loampit Vale in Lewisham was affected by flooding from noon onwards on 23 November 2014 after the river Ravensbourne burst its banks. The Lewisham Gateway team and the Environment Agency are conducting an investigation, which will identify if the works contributed to the flooding and if so what measures could be put in place to prevent further incidents.

Update – Streetlife – 7 August 2014
There's a discussion about the park and the proposals on the Streetlife site.

Update  RVPS position  5 August 2014
See here for the Ravensbourne Valley Preservation Society position on the Lottery funding proposal.

– answers to our questions – 24 July 2014
We can now publish the Environment Agency's answers to our questions. See here.

Update  RVPS position  20 July 2014
See here for the Ravensbourne Valley Preservation Society position on the Lewisham and Catford flood alleviation scheme.

Update – Lottery funding – 11 July 2014
Sheep may safely graze once again at Beckenham Place Park, which this week won £4.9m Lottery funding, but not everyone is happy. See here for a golfer's view, who queries whether the park is used by an average of just 45 golfers a day. And do we share their worries about the proposed "event space", with the possibility of open-air concerts?

Sheep grazing in 1920s at Beckenham Place Park – photo courtesy of Phoenix Community Housing

Update  Lottery funding  9 July 2014
Lewisham Council will consult current users of the park and the wider public as it develops more detailed plans for future use. See this webpage and the funding proposal for more detailKey landscape proposed works relate to:

01. Existing park entrances
02. Existing path upgrades
03. New site wide path network
04. Removal of existing 18 hole golf course, for parkland restoration & historic view management
05. Beckenham Place Mansion
06. Proposed new car park
07. Southend Lodge & depot
08. Tennis court & kitchen/formal gardens
09. The Homesteads & Garden Cottage complex
10. Restored pleasure grounds + toddler play
11. Restored C18th lake
12. Existing park storage/depot area
13. Ash Plantation
14. Proposed designated BMX/cycle track
15. Adventure play to The Common & Ravensbourne River
16. Old Bromley Road playground
17. Old Bromley Road skate park
18. Old Bromley Road car park
19. Old Bromley Road new Kiosk / WC building

Update – Lottery funding – 7 July 2014
Parks and cemeteries across the UK have today received £34.5m in Lottery cash to support restoration and fundraising. Some 13 parks will receive backing from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) and Big Lottery Fund, including Beckenham Place Park, which will receive £4.9m. See here.

Update  Lewisham and Catford flood alleviation scheme  3 July 2014
Further information detailing the flood reduction scheme in Beckenham Place Park is now available. The files contain Environment Agency information, and copyright and database right reside with the Environment Agency. They comprise the following:

  • Posters – used as part of the public drop-in sessions detailing the proposals for the flood storage at Beckenham Place Park, works on Honor Oak stream and localised works to river wall (see especially Poster 5, also reproduced below, which shows a plan of the proposed works).
  • Briefing note – good as a handout and outlining the scheme with some background.
  • Flood map 
i) the Ravensbourne model, which has been produced by Halcrow in 2010 to show flood risk in each rainfall event (return period); and
ii) the National Flood Risk Assessment model, using local data and expertise.

Indicative plan of how the park could look

Update  flood alleviation scheme in our area  28 June 2014
The Environment Agency has just released details of a flood alleviation scheme in our area. In short, the intention is, at times of exceptional rainfall, to store temporarily water in our area to prevent flooding in Lewisham.

To do this a very big earth bank will be built in order to make, at times of exceptional rainfall, a lake. This lake will be formed on:

  • Summerhouse Field (the flat field next to the cycle path which itself is next to the river);
  • the rough piece of ground formerly the playing fields of the Goan Association (UK);
  • a large part of Warren Avenue Playing Fields; and
  • most of Millwall FC training ground.

The water will be released again, allowing the grass to reappear, after the risk of flooding downstream has passed. The briefing note from the Environment Agency gives further details. More information to follow when we have it.

Lewisham and Catford flood alleviation scheme – 26 June 2014
See here for how the Environment Agency is working to reduce the risk of flooding in the Lewisham and Catford area. This document explains the plans to manage flood risk within the floodplain of the river Ravensbourne, including flood storage at Beckenham Place Park.

Beckenham Place Park – Heritage Lottery – 10 January 2014
Kate Yorke has been in touch, indicating she works in the Programme Management team at Lewisham Council, and is currently working on the Heritage Lottery bids for Beckenham Place Park. The Friends of Beckenham Place Park group is very interested in the bid, and they have been invited to a consultation event that will be taking place on Saturday 18 January 2014 from 10 a.m. to about 3 p.m. at the Green Man in Downham. The Green Man is now a Phoenix housing office / events development on the site of the old Green Man pub, opposite Sainsbury's Homebase at Peter Pan’s Pool / Bromley Road, Southend Village.

The landscape architects that are involved in the bid have drawn up different options of how the park could look in the future which will be displayed at the event, and they would be interested in hearing opinions on each option. The architects will be explaining the plans to small groups which should leave plenty of time for questions and feedback.

The session on Saturday will be split into two groups – the morning (10 a.m. to 12 noon) will be specifically for current users of the park, such as the Friends of Beckenham Place Park and working party, and the afternoon (1 to 3:30 p.m.) will be open to all local residents that are interested.

It’s important that we make sure that the park's character is preserved, regardless of the preliminary grant bid process. The fear is that landscape architects will come up with grandiose schemes that destroy some of the natural aspects of the park.

Anyone would like to attend should you let Kate know by Friday 10 January 2014 .