Park Trust gets ready for handover with Connections strategy

Bromley Council is due to hand the keys to Crystal Palace Park over to a charitable trust in April 2023, and the Crystal Palace Park Trust has released its strategy document ahead of the momentous event.

The 200-acre park was created in 1854, as a pleasure ground around the original Crystal Palace.

But as CPPT notes, even since the time that the vast glass and steel building burned to the ground in 1936, the park has encountered financial struggles. Previously operated by the GLC, Crystal Palace Park has been in the hands of Bromley since 1986; the borough council is giving the Trust a 125-year lease on one of the capital’s most important public spaces.

The Trust’s strategy is built around staging large-scale events to raise the funds for more community-orientated events, and for the maintenance and improvements to the park’s heritage. The Trust says it is working to the principle that “every penny we raise in the Park stays in the park”.

Philip Kolvin KC, the Trust’s co-chair, said today, “This strategy represents the culmination of decades of work to give the community a chance to establish and implement its own vision for this much loved park.

‘Many decades of work’: Trust co-chair Philip Kolvin KC

“There are many decades of work ahead, but these represent the Trust’s first steps in the Park, and ones we are overjoyed to take.”

The strategy document is called Connections, which the Trust says reflects their “commitment to connect to its local community and expert Park groups, to nature and the green network, and to the Park’s history”.

The strategy runs just to 2024, to carry the Park “through important changes, as the Trust takes over the job of looking after the park and all its heritage, ecological and recreational facilities and builds the staff team to improve the park experience for the community and other visitors”, they say.

Among their first steps, the Trust is undertaking “the long overdue” refurbishment of the Park’s toilets, installation of disabled toilet facilities, new planting projects, bringing the concert platform into community use and expanding children’s play programmes and community arts.

Trust chief executive Bill LoSasso said, “Connections tempers ambition with pragmatism, as we continue to put in place the structures and finances for long-term, sustainable management of the Park. The strategy deliberately goes only to 2024, since we will learn so much once we are entrusted with the keys, and will come back to the community for a longer-term strategy when we are ready.”

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This entry was posted in Bromley Council, Charity, Community associations, Croydon parks, Crystal Palace and Upper Norwood, Crystal Palace Park, Crystal Palace Park Trust, Environment, London-wide issues and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Park Trust gets ready for handover with Connections strategy

  1. Good news on the bogs front.

    “By far the biggest request was for the Park’s toilets adjacent to the café to be renovated. In the coming year, the Trust will completely renovate the toilets to provide a modern, durable facility that meets the needs of Park users. In addition, working with Bromley Council, the Trust will provide an accessible ‘Changing Places’ toilet facilities for the first time, a first step in the Trust’s commitment to ensuring that Crystal Palace Park is a place for all people”.

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