The Friends of Kennington Park [FOKP] started in 2002 when the park was very run down. We’ve worked closely with Lambeth Council to keep it safe and welcoming and to maintain and improve facilities. Friends’ fundraising enabled us to move the childrens’ playground to the centre of the park, obtain two table tennis tables, and re-plant several flower beds. Restoring the Sexby Flower Garden was a four-year project.
Green Flag and Silver Gilt Medals
The park has won a prestigious Green Flag for several years. When we learned that Lambeth had nominated the park and flower garden for London in Bloom awards we were determined to do our best. In the run up to judging, volunteers did hours of extra work – and got help from Good Gym runners and staff from the Northern Line Extension works. We were thrilled to win two Silver Gilt awards.
Trees counted, trees planted
Another recent project was in partnership with our park neighbours Trees for Cities. Every tree in the park – over 500 – was surveyed by volunteers. This month, 49 volunteers planted 17 new trees and local schools planted 3 more. Another park neighbour, Bee Urban, has added more trees – an orchard on the Green Link between the Heritage Park and the Extension where sports take place.
A place in history
In 1848 Kennington Park was the site of the Chartists’ rally when thousands of people gathered to march on Parliament to present their charter with demands about the voting system, electors and elections. 2018 is the 170th anniversary of this important event in our democracy and FOKP plan various events and – eventually – a permanent memorial.