THE FRIENDS OF DOWNHILLS PARK were established in 1999, developing out of the Parks Sub-Group of the West Green Residents' Association.
Recognizing the importance of Downhills Park, Lordship and Belmont recreation grounds to the quality of life in West Green ward, the Friends aimed to promote the public benefit and enjoyment of these open spaces by involving local people in planning and decision-making affecting these areas and encouraging more local people to use the parks and take an active interest in their future.
FODP has since spawned two very active daughter Friends groups for Lordship and Belmont Rec, and now concentrates on Downhills Park.
The Friends work to benefit the inhabitants of the London Borough of Haringey in particular, but not exclusively, in West Green. They have campaigned to reverse the decline in the park in the 1990s, to press for improvements in its facilities while protecting its historic character, and to enhance public interest and awareness of the park.
MEMBERSHIP is open to any interested member of the public over 18. To join, contact the Secretary, or come along to our Annual General Meeting.
OFFICERS and COMMITTEE: Chairman: Dee Same. Secretary: Clare Parry, email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Treasurer: Sylvia Oland email: email@example.com. Others Christopher Currie (website), Keith Shawcross (wildlife).
Next meeting:AGM Saturday [please note!] 6 May, at 4 pm in the Cafe. further meetings are planned for 11 June, 10 September, 29 October.
Further meetings planned.
Come and have your say!!!
The most recent Newsletter is available here.
Following pressure from the Friends, Haringey Council, with
the aid of the Government's Single Regeneration Budget for West Green
Learning Neighbourhood, hired consultants to draw up a development
plan for the area including the park, and a public consultation was
held. The public voted for improvements such as better security and
access, a cafe, a pedestrian link to West Green, the
restoration of the historic Conservatory, and more.
We have lobbied to hold the Council to carry out these improvements. Largely as a result of Friends' pressure:
the tennis courts were repaired and upgraded and summer tennis coaching was introduced,
new notice boards and information boards were put up,
a new footpath was built through the recreation ground,
a wildflower zone was introduced, and recently bird boxes have been built for it and additional trees planted there
pedestrian traffic lights were installed on Downhills Park Road to provide a safe route between the Park and Rec Ground to the south and Lordship Rec to the north,
dog bins have been provided,
and a new rockery was built at the West Green Road entrance.
A Park Forum was established to involve all interested bodies in joined-up information exchange and decision making.
a management plan for the park was prepared, which will help to develop it the way users want, and should be brought up to date each year by the Council in consultation with the Friends.
Haringey Council has obtained in 2006 and each following year the coveted Green Flag Award for the Park.
Pond was constructed near the steps.
The Friends have encouraged community events
in the park such as the annual Art
in the Park (16 July in 2006; 15 July 2007, 12 July 2009, 18
July 2010, 10 July 2011, 15 July 2012, 21 July 2013; 20 July 2014; 19 July 2015), and in 2003 we organized a
attended by thousands, and contacted present and former
residents to share their reminiscences in a commemoration video
illustrating the park's history and people's memories.
THE VIDEO IS STILL FOR SALE! Contact the Treasurer.
We liaise on local issues with TCV and West Green Residents' Association, who have provided sterling help on park issues, and we have representation on West Green Environmental Theme Group.
We have collaborated with TCV (formerly BTCV) in planting new trees in the park, and in 2004 were honoured to receive an award under the BTCV People's Places Scheme to help restore the historic Hornbeam Avenue, and other areas which had suffered losses of trees.
After many years of FODP activity on a Café project the Café opened on 27 March 2011.
shows the installation process (thanks to Malcolm Hawley for preparing
more funding becomes available, extra modules could be added at a
later date to enlarge the building. Haringey Council have obtained a
grant from an outside body to enhance the Natural Play Area west of the
Café, as well as to improve
equipment in the existing Children's Play
Area further south.
have been continuing the campaign to plant new bulbs and trees in the
Park. See pictures
We have also lobbied to raise funds to restore the historic railings round the park.
This site is maintained by Christopher Currie