Primary - Adding to quality of life - spiritual value: 2009 Ingrebourne Hill

1. Project Title
‘Turning an unsightly brownfield into an attractive greenspace’

2. List the main RWS theme(s) relevant to your project
Quality of Life/Education & Training/Natural Environment

3. Short Project Description
The Forestry Commission’s Thames Chase Team identified this site as a possible community woodland in the Ingrebourne Valley in the late 1990’s. This capped landfill site was seen to have considerable greenspace potential. Protracted negotiations over the site ownership followed and, finally in 2007 with the provision of Department of Community and Local Government monies, a contract signed and development works commenced in January 2008. A community engagement process was undertaken during the spring and summer of 2007 when the site’s design was agreed and planning consent secured. Subsequently there were a number of tree planting events with schoolchildren and adults

4. Project Status
Phases 1 & 2 completed July 2008

5. What has been undertaken to date?
To date the Commission have installed 4.1 km of walks, of which 0.9km is all-ability, created connections to Hornchurch Country Park and are prepared for the London Loop to be re-directed through the site; plus3 km of cycle trails and 2.1 km of horse trails; a 2.1 km Mountain Bike course has been installed along with a play area, a climbing boulder, two picnic spots, numerous benches plus a 3600 viewing point and ample car parking.

As well as providing a significant improvement to the lives of South Hornchurch residents, there is an active ‘green classroom’ schools programme underway. The site team is also committed to contributing to the local BAP targets and protection of the adjacent SSSI.

6. Any specific lessons learned?
That with a mixture of good faith and astute land management it is possible to arrive at an understanding between a developer, site owner and a borough council to proceed with a project without any formal contract being in place.

7. Future Developments
The first 54 ha were opened to the public in July 2008. Work on the next phase is presently scheduled for completion in 2010, with the entire site planned to be available for complete public access by 2012.

A programme of community engagement will be maintained on this increasingly popular site.

8. Contact Details
Luke Everitt, Community Ranger

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