Last week I visited Fairlop Waters to see Redbridge council's plans to rejuvenate this fantastic area of green space. The first thing that struck me was the size of the park, over 145 hectares of wetland, scrub and grassland, including a golf course and a lake used for sailing. Much of this is presently underused because visitors get no further than the driving range and restaurant near the entrance.
Ambitious plans include improving the eighties style entrance and the rather poor quality access road, restoring habitats; including a gravel island, to provide better biodiversity; relocating the sailing club to more suitable buildings; a boulder park and adventure play area. The project also aims to open up access to land south of the park, including a silted lagoon which is currently hard to reach.
The good news is that this worthwhile proposal has been shortlisted in the mayor's competition for £2m regeneration funding. It is also in with a shout in the 'Help a London Park' public vote for £400k, although obviously it cannot win both these sums. The new park would be a great asset for the whole of north east London and the nearer parts of Essex so I hope the bid is successful.