Greenspaces: Cornmill Gardens and River Mill Park

Cornmill Gardens and River Mill Park form a single green space in the heart of Lewisham, framed on all sides by high-rise buildings, from the rebuilt Sundermead Estate to the emerging towers of the Renaissance project on Loampit Vale.

Hidden from the main road, it feels like a communal garden with a large central lawn, but is open on all sides and makes great use of the River Ravensbourne, which has been freed from its old concrete channel to create verdant riverbanks with wooden jetties, like a mini version of Ladywell Fields.

The park has collected a string of public space awards.

15 comments:

cuppicake said...

it's a lovely park.
I think it will only get better when the pool opens and there is a close by cafe!

Anonymous said...

They don't seem to maintain the bank, which is a mess of nettles.

Anonymous said...

I'm sure I've seen a swan down there.

cuppicake said...

anon #1 - blah blah blah. Go down and pull them yourself. Nettles are actually good for gardens and wildlife. Have some sunshine in your coffee and see the bright side once in a while.

anon #2. you're right. There was a single swan there last year for a few weeks. Then it left. There are also herons.

Anonymous said...

Looks really nice. Does anyone else remember this area back in the 1960s, before the original council flats were built and the river encased?It was a really scruffy area, used as a bit of a dump - I found some old pram wheels there to go on my box cart!

Anonymous said...

Nettles are really important to buterflies.

Pete said...

It is nice down there and seems underused to me. I sometimes go down there with my son to use the playground as an alternative to Hilly and Ladywell Fields, and it is often quite empty.

If you have a toddler I can recommend it at the moment because there is the added excitement of cranes and also the railway with trains going past.

Anonymous said...

Nettles are wonderful plants and together with japanese bind weed (also good for butterflys) they evoke the neglect that generally follows Lewisham landscaping projects.

Anonymous said...

You mean Knotweed. At least get your invasive species correct if your going to be cynical smartarse.

Calystagea Hederacea said...

He could have meant the bindweed (the smartarse) but probably not.
Nettles should flourish as part of the normal flora of a riverbank.

Anonymous said...

I guess the nettles have the advantage of discouraging curious children from going too near the water.

I expect it saves the council a packet on barbed wire AND it is totally organic.

Now don't any of you start harvesting the stuff for your own purposes. If word gets around that the banks of Lewisham riverine splendour have this treasure, there will be a rush to harvest the stuff to make nourishing soups. Therapy rooms will sprout nettle rash treatments to soothe the over-stressed health obsessives. Soon enough the banks of Ravensbourne and Quaggy will be denuded, rendered bald of this green, stingy goodness and it would be all grass and flowers.

That, would be so unnatural.

Forager said...

Does anyone else get their rocket from the wild patch growing alongside Lewisham College on Deptford Church Street?

Anonymous said...

No, especially not as every Tom Dick and Harry passing will no doubt be pissing on it after a night on the sauce, it's what men do if you didn't realise

Anonymous said...

Interesting theory, but that would require decent pubs to be in the vicinity to supply a steady stream of gentlemen caught short.

Central Lewisham as dearth of the former leading to a scarcity of the latter.

So feel free to fill your boots and do something useful with this abundant weed.

These waterways look awful when the river is obscured behind a wall of weed. I guess Lewisham can't afford to look after them.

Robert Sheppard said...

I walk through Cornmill Gardens twice every weekday on my way to/from the station (indeed I have walked this way for 20+ years!) and am pleased to have helped safeguarded the row of trees (which used to front a Council block) that form the boundary with the new Renaissance development. The Park is WELL-used I would say - indeed packed on any sunny day and will doubtless be more so when the new School is opened in Sept. The Park is a tribute to the vision of Martin Hodge, the Council officer who project-managed Cornmill Gardens and died (too young) only last month. ANYONE WANTING TO HELP SET UP A FRIENDS GROUP FOR THE PARK SHOULD CONTACT lewisham@glendale-services.co.uk

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