Lambeth Council have worked with neighbouring schools, tenants and residents, and local community groups to agree on making Milkwood Park even better for children for the whole community. Milkwood Community Park Project Manager Caroline Streeks explains the improvement works: “We had Section 106 developer’s money, with the obligation that it must be used for improving children’s play in the park. Consultation with the local community involved asking the Friends of Milkwood Park group , the Tenants and Residents Association (TRA), Jessop School and the Michael Tippett special needs school that stand on either side of the park, and local churchgoers, what they wanted.
Fitness and fun
“They agreed to proposals including an outdoor gym and disability-friendly play equipment like a roundabout that wheelchair users can ride on without having to transfer, and a nest swing that works for one toddler, or adults and children. It really brings the community together.
On the road
“We also put down tarmac to create a scooter area painted up to look like a street – it’s great to see children playing using their imaginations, stopping at the give way signs and just having fun.
“For me the best thing is the community art. Originally we ran a competition in the two schools for the best piece of art to become a mural on the electricity sub-station. The entries were so good we changed it to a collage made up of different entries under the banner ‘Our Milkwood’ with flowers, rainbows, bees with faces, kids on swings – a bit of everything.
“The final piece of the jigsaw will be to plant a sensory garden with plants that feel interesting, or make a sound or release their fragrance when you brush your hands through them. We want to involve the community hands-on in the planting and arrange a volunteer gardening day.”
Word from the Cabinet
Cllr Sonia Winifred, Cabinet Member for Equalities and Culture, said “Milkwood Park was originally created by the community. In 2007 it was the first of Lambeth’s parks to receive a coveted Green Flag award – which it has successfully competed to win again every year alongside more and more parks in Lambeth. Now, we’re delighted to see the community coming together again to make this much-loved space even more inclusive.”
For more information
For more about Green Flag Parks see Green Flag’s information pages. We look forward to finding out the results of the judging for Lambeth Parks in July.