Following on from the success of grant bids for Birchmere Park and The Link Thamesmead's Pocket Park the Trust has helped secure another £716,000 in funding for Thamesmead’s natural environment.
The London Borough of Bexley and its partners, including ourselves, have secured this substantial funding which will go towards significant environmental improvements in Thamesmead and Abbey Wood.
£300,000 will be provided by the Mayor of London’s Big Green Fund, which grants funding towards the delivery of green infrastructure projects across the Capital.
A further £416,000 match funding has been provided by partners involved in the project, including Gallions Housing Association, the Environment Agency, Thames Water and the London Borough of Bexley.
Other project partners include Sustrans, North West Kent Countryside Partnership, Crossness Engines Trust, Tilfen Land, Groundwork London and the South East London Green Chain. The funding will be used to enhance a key strategic green link for pedestrians and cyclists between Lesnes Abbey Woods, The Link Thamesmead, Crossness Pumping Station and the River Thames. It will improve access with the provision of new signage, lighting and seating, and by establishing a clearer network of pathways.
It will also provide new planting, dipping platforms, viewing points, a bird-hide and wetland enhancements to encourage and protect wildlife and biodiversity around Southmere Lake, the marshes and in green spaces throughout the area.
The Trust’s Head of Business Development Richard Fishlock, believes the scheme can make a big difference: “We know that Thamesmead has a wealth of green spaces, lakes and waterways, and diverse heritage assets such as Crossness Engines and Lesnes Abbey.
“However, up until now the problem has been that they are poorly linked and, in places, hard to access. This funding will greatly enhance connectivity and the community’s ability to engage with the natural environment. It will also improve access to The Link and Sporting Club Thamesmead, so the timing is perfect.”
Work to deliver the project is likely to begin in the autumn, with completion in late 2014.