Recognised as a key local organisation, HyPER attended the recent Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens stakeholder meeting, chaired by the CEO of the Royal Parks (Andrew Scattergood), with updates from the 2 parks managers Jason Taylor and Andy Williams as well as the Parks police. We raised a number of questions and suggestions that had been brought by members. These included the following:
- A suggestion for lighting on the stretch of path leading to Kensington Gardens from West Carriage Drive at Victoria Gate. This is very dark at night and difficult to see the steps. The Parks confirmed that they have a draft design to install lighting on the steps, which they are hoping will be in place by the Autumn.
- We asked about any plans for EV chargers in the Parks. The Parks confirmed that they will be looked at this, but there is nothing planned at this time. Nonetheless, we are pleased to hear that they are currently planning infrastructure to allow their contractors to charge electric vehicles.
- We suggested a more aesthetically pleasing barrier for the west end of North Carriage Drive, where there are currently cones. The Parks confirmed that this is a project being looked at, and that although a specification has not yet been produced, they are hoping it should be installed in the next 12 months.
We also received a general update, including being briefed on the new 5 year strategy for the Parks with the following key objectives:
- Make everyone feel welcome
- Conserve and enhance the parks for future generations
- Build a secure future income in order to sustain the Parks
The Royal Parks are very busy with much else going on: it’s great to see significant investment for future generations. Here is a quick summary:
- British Summer Time concerts return this summer after 2 years away
- A new brand and website
- Upgrades of noticeboards
- Refurbishment and redecoration of the ornamental railings around the perimeter of the Albert Memorial
- Restoration of the bandstand in Kensington Gardens
- Redecoration and roof repairs to the Queens Caroline’s Temple
- Possibility of most interest to a certain demographic of HyPER members, the refurbishment of the very popular Diana Memorial Playground, including the replacement of the very popular pirate ship
Do let us know if you’d like any more information on the above and get in touch if you have any comments or questions.