Thursday, 3 December 2009

Deptford Update

Last week I spent a couple of hours at the Deptford Update exhibition in the APT Gallery on Creekside.

Although the exhibition was due to close last Sunday, it has been extended for the coming weekend. If you are at all interested in forthcoming public realm plans for this area, I recommend a visit. There is a lot of information there, although you need to pay attention to work out what is real and what is just fantasy - the exhibition not only includes information about planned improvements, but also several student proposals for projects ranging from fascinating to fanciful.

Be aware that the exhibition only covers public realm projects - that is streetscapes, parks and public spaces - and you won't find information about any of the residential and mixed use developments earmarked for Creekside or Convoy's Wharf, except as shapes on the large map that was created for the exhibition.

But you will find information about plans to improve Admiralty Square in Pepys estate, Pepys Park, Grove Square Gardens, Margaret McMillan Park, Fordham Underpass, Fordham Park and phase two of the Kender Triangle, all of which according to the map are 'due on site in 2010'. I'll be writing about some of these in the coming weeks.

According to the map, Deptford Station is also 'due on site March 2010'! I wonder if Joan knows about this?

There is also a fascinating collection of books about Deptford past and present, architecture, landscaping and so on, all of which are available for browsing. I even got offered a cup of coffee and a biscuit when I visited.

So if you want to know more how things are going to change over the coming months and years - at least in your local public spaces - pop along to the exhibition during the weekend while you've still got the opportunity. Believe me, it's much easier than trying to get information out of the council or your local MP!


Anonymous said...

Dame - enjoyed this post, however I think you are a little unfair on the council. I believe the update was funded by Lewisham Council and Design for London. But I agree that not nearly enough is done to promote and explain what is going on in the area.

Deptford dame said...

Thanks for your response anon - my comments are based entirely on my own experience of course. However my day job involves trying to get information out of people, and if I find it difficult, imagine what it's like for Joe Public. Yes the exhibition was supported by the council, but it was not very well publicised. I found out about it from another blogger.

CarolineLD said...

Dame, I agree entirely that it's not easy to find out about these things. In fact, when I visited the (under-publicised) Update this afternoon I was suprised to find that there are plans for the park my flat overlooks. Further reading showed that there had been only 4 hours of consultation: 2 hours stood in the park in the early morning and a meeting in the Albany the following week. All while I was on holiday, but there was no leaflet, letter or slightly-out-of-date poster around when I got back...

Bill Ellson said...

The so-called improvements to Fordham Park are a clssic case of 'design by budget' ie get money from central government and get somebody to come up with a scheme that will use all the money. As usual Lewisham Council are throwing capital at public space in the hope that the Revenue Fairy will appear and improve management and maintenance.

As for the model at APT I did ask why the Dog and Bell was missing!