Hackbridge bridges - Network Rail has demolished the Irrigation and 100 Acre bridges. This is despite over 1000 people signing our petition to save them.
We are determined to make sure this is only a setback for the ambitions to create a new Wandle Metropolitan Park stretching from Beddington Park to Mitcham. This vast area of open space - more than three times the size of Hyde Park - has never been coherently managed and much remains off limits.
If the loss of the bridges can have a silver lining it is to reignite the momentum to deliver a new open space for London. The first green shoots are visible. Over 500 supported our petition for Sutton Council to back a replacement bridge. Sutton Council has said that "now is the time for action" and Sutton Council Leader Ruth Dombey has told Wandle Valley Forum that she is "glad to work together to find ways of providing pedestrian access. Important for the future of the park."
As a first step one thing is certain - any sensible plans for future public access are going to need better access over the railway. Sutton Council is already building a new school right next to where a bridge will be needed. A next step is to include an enabling policy in the new Sutton Local Plan.
Watch the destruction of the Hackbridge bridges in the short video below.
Wandle Fortnight is a celebration of all things Wandle. In September 2016 over 50 activities were put on by the community.
Wandle Valley Forum was pleased to support nine organisations with micro grants for their Wandle Fortnight activities. These were Friends in St Helier, Mole Valley Orienteering Club, Sutton and Wandle Valley Ramblers, Ethnic Minority Centre, Wild in the City, Mitcham Cricket Green Community & Heritage, Object Book, Wendelsworth Community Garden and Workshop 305.
We distributed £1000 to support events which attracted over 440 people and inspired over 220 volunteer hours for the benefit of the Wandle Valley.
Read what the groups did with their microgrants in their own words here.
We are grateful to the Living Wandle Landscape Partnership and the Heritage Lottery Fund for the support that made the micro grants scheme possible and are expecting to be running a similar grants programme for the 2017 event.
Wandle Valley Forum Charter launched
The Wandle Valley Forum Charter was launched at our Annual Meeting in April 2016. The Charter is grounded in the views of community groups, voluntary organisations and local businesses that support Wandle Valley Forum. The Charter:
Download and print the Wandle Valley Forum Charter here.
The winners of our 10th anniversary photographic competition were announced in December 2015. See some of the winners and entries below:
Wandle Valley Forum
Wandle Valley Forum provides support and an independent voice for over 100 community groups & voluntary organisations and for everyone who shares a passion for the Wandle. Our campaigning was instrumental in establishing the Wandle Valley Regional Park and we are integral to its future development. Support us by offering your time or giving a donation.
Our priorities are set out in the Wandle Valley Forum Charter.
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