Improvement plans

St John’s Churchyard is bounded on the north and west sides by residential properties and is a valuable local green space in a densely urban area of central London.  Many residents and workers use the park for relaxation and recreation.  Druid Street (south side) and Tower Bridge Road (east side) are both busy roads with high foot traffic;  the park is also a  pedestrian and cycle route connecting Tower Bridge Road and Tooley Street.

A key priority of the project is to repair and restore the historic Grade II-listed railings, gates and stone pillars that run along Fair Street. A separate application for listed building consent has been approved for this work. The proposal for improvements to the park, outlined  in the planning application,  include making some of the park entrances more accessible to the surrounding residents and visitors;  creating more open space to sit and interact;  upgrading of the playground equipment to enable children to play in a safer environment as well as learning about growing plants and vegetables with dedicated allotment beds.   The design and access statement for St John’s Churchyard describes the proposals for the park.

St John’s Churchyard was previously developed in 2004, but to make the park a more enjoyable and open environment,  improvements to the railings, children’s playground and access are necessary, summarised as follows:

  • The playground is currently unsafe, the equipment is dated and doesn’t offer space for parents/guardians to relax whilst their children play. Improvements to the area and new entrance gates to this space will create a safer, more enjoyable play area for both children and parents.
  • Currently some of the entrances to the park create an enclosed feel and restricted access. Simple improvements to these will open up the park, creating a more inviting appearance and better access for greater use of the park.
  • Areas of the park become very muddy underfoot after wet weather and reoccurring use. Simple landscaping changes will mean the green areas of the park will become more inviting and floriated displays will add colour to areas that are currently under used.

The full Planning Application was submitted on the 1st August 2017 and is available to view here on the Southwark Council Planning portal.