Greenwich Park Update

Good Grief – it’ sonly Monday and I’m already harping on about the old chestnuts again…

Richard was one of the furious scribblers last week. He wrote to Greenwich Council (no reply so far) and Derek Spurr at Royal Parks – who (top marks for speedy replies) writes:

“Thank you for your message regarding Greenwich Park and in particular Olympic events, I will reply in the same order as set out by you.

Our role in the 2012 events is to provide the stage and to ensure that the park is protected, the 2012 organisers are putting on the show. We will not agree to the removal or damage to trees and we will want to be assured that the park is returned back to us in the condition it was at the commencement of the event.

It will be up to the event organisers to ensure that the site is suitable for its use, the official equestrian bodies at international level have indicated thus far that it is.

The Council’s role is more strategic, ours is more of a local concern -as Venue Managers.

I am not in a position to confirm the plans as these are still being developed by the 2012 organisers. The plans, set out in the original Candidature File give an indication of the site, as seen at the submission stage, this may vary, but we have not seen any revised submission so far.

The closure programme will become clearer once the organisers have finalised the event plans, we will want the closure period to be as short as possible and to keep sections open, if possible throughout.

No tree will be destroyed, we will want both the trees as the root zones protected this along with other important features, we have made our position clear in this regard.”

This is encouraging stuff. But we mustn’t let our guard down. The Olympic juggernaut at full pelt is a furious beast indeed. We need to be there to support people like Derek Spurr and to make sure that his position is not compromised or weakened by people in a certain govenment department who may decide to put sport and media before culture.

For those of you who have been asking about the petition,

should get you there. Katie, who sent me the link, reminds people that you have to click on the email that they send you back *before* you have officially signed the petition (she nearly closed the window without realising…)

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