Friday, 19 July 2013

Secret Garden Project Lewisham

Sue Godfrey Nature Park in Deptford features in a number of events based along the Ravensbourne and Pool Rivers as part of the Secret Garden Project, a pan-London programme of environmental art commissions focussing on the capital's lesser known green spaces.

Artist Rebecca Beinart will be exploring the history and botany of the Sue Godfrey Nature Park during a three month residency, starting with a number of events in the park.

The website describes the park as 'a small and inconspicuous wild land, wedged amongst residential blocks in the heart of Deptford which has become a haven for wildlife. Originally the site of the Parry's pottery works, when industry trades began to diminish in Deptford it was left as a wasteland, with parameters ringed and only the ruins of a 17th century kiln as a nod to its past. 

'However, after a lengthy campaign by local residents, Sue Godfrey Nature Park was established in 1984, opening the site back up to the public and wildlife alike and who have since successfully fought off several attempts for redevelopment. 

'Drawing on the the rich history of local activism, trade and green spaces in Deptford, Beinart will host a series of medicine making workshops, conversations and shared meals over the coming months. The project seeks to open up wider questions around urban ecology, local knowledge and land use in cities.'

As well as events in Deptford, the project involves the creation of new permanent artworks for Ladywell Fields and Cornmill Gardens, as well as development of a mobile app and digital sound installation for the River Pool Linear Park down towards Bellingham.

Meanwhile here's a photo of my favourite 'secret' artwork in Sue Godfrey Nature Park - you will only get to see it if you walk right through the middle.


vesper said...

I remember attending Greenwich planning meetings with Sue Godfrey when we were trying to get the Deptford Power Station and Creekside planning brief changed from a visionless light industrial solution to a housing, housing, housing, and a hotel solution.

We succeeded, and our vision also kick started changes to the planning briefs for the Peninsula too.

My dad grew up in the prefabs in Berthon Street which is where the "Sue Godfrey Nature Park" is now situated alongside Bronze Street.

I grew up at 179 Deptford Church Street, which like Crossfield Street is a site which once housed families, but which now awaits regeneration, and the touch of a great architect who will hopefully fully appreciate the unique heart of Deptford location alongside the inspired, and inspiring architecture of 'The Pearl' that is St Paul's SE8 MATE

RIP Sue Godfrey too.

Anonymous said...

As a long-standing resident of Crossfields estate I love the Sue Godfrey Nature Park - a lovely wild green open space. Have to ask, why did someone see fit to put up something which is so totally at odds with the landscape? Could the person involved please take it down and leave our park alone.