hammersmith godophin road

Inspiring Space

Godolphin Road Community Gardens selected as benchmark project by The Commission for Architecture and the Build Environment

ODPM Minister Yvette Cooper are (L-R) Miles Coverdale pupils Reece Hercules, Vi Nguyen, both 9, Leila Tallie, Joel Jaldoo, both 10, Lucy Lee and Olivia Mangumbu, both 9

Julia Thrift director of CABE Space, Vi Nguyen, Lucy Lee, both 9, Hammersmith & Fulham Council mayor Cllr Charlie Treloggan, Minister Yvette Cooper, leader of H & F Council Cllr Andrew Slaughter, Joel Jaldoo, 10, Reece Hercules, 9, Olivia Mangumbu, 9, and Leila Tallie, 10

Godolphin Road Community Gardens (W12) have been named on a list of the country's eight "Inspiring Spaces" (a space that demonstrates how real imagination and hard work can transform an urban community) by CABE (The Commission for Architecture and the Build Environment).

The announcement was made as CABE launched a radical new ten-point Manifesto, welcomed by the Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott, calling for greater priority to be given to Britain's city parks, squares and open spaces in ways that will enable local people to get involved. It also gives local communities, politicians, local authorities, businesses and consultants the information they need to make the case for better quality civic spaces.

Yvette Cooper, Minister from the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister (ODPM), visited Godolphin Road Community Gardens, last Tuesday, March 23, to launch CABE Space's ten-point 'Manifesto for Better Public Space'. The Minister was joined by children from Miles Coverdale Primary School, in Shepherds Bush, who are members of the school's gardening club. The children learned about the history of the gardens with the help of a local history pack produced by Hammersmith & Fulham Urban Studies Centre, a local environmental education centre.

The Manifesto for Better Public Space is supported by a new report (The Value of Public Space) published by CABE that shows how cities in the UK and around the world have received far-reaching economic, health and social benefits from making the best of their public spaces.


The eight "Inspiring Spaces" in Plymouth, Sheffield, Manchester, Gloucester, Salford, Sandwell and three projects in London, are being highlighted by CABE as benchmark projects and used as examples from which the public can draw inspiration and knowledge. Through the website CABE want to encourage the public to get involved in the improvement of open spaces in their local community and put them in touch with organisations that can help them put their dreams into practice.

Godolphin Road Community Gardens is a small 0.8 hectare garden that was a war-time bomb-damaged site in the middle of a residential area. Run by Hammersmith Community Gardens Association it received a Green Pennant Award in 2003. A sculpture of the Green Man, created for the Millennium celebrations watches over the events that take place in the garden including an annual summer music festival a community composting scheme and a children's play area.

The Hammersmith Community Garden Association (HCGA), which was formed in 1994 with a merger of Loris Road Community Garden (20 years old) and Godolphin Road Community Garden (16 years old). Supported by the Education & Environment Departments of the council, they will receive £20,481 in core funding and project grant aid of £4,000 in 2004/05.

HCGA is one of the nine partners in the Shepherds Bush Healthy Living Centre, and is engaged in partnership work with Sure Start, borough schools and nurseries and Ealing Hammersmith & West London College.

HCGA is nearing completion of its Eco Shed development at Loris Road and is working towards a third site, developing a community garden and food growing area jointly with St. Mungos at Oakland House.

Cllr Michael Cartwright, Hammersmith & Fulham Council's deputy for environment, said: "We are a small, densely developed borough and the spaces we have are vital to the well-being of our residents and visitors. As a Beacon Council for improving urban green spaces we are doing our best to inspire the same level of commitment in other councils. We really believe that a commitment to improving our parks, gardens and green areas improves the health of the borough and our residents, and makes Hammersmith & Fulham a better place to live. That is why we are helping to fund community groups such as Hammersmith Community Gardens Association, which has an excellent track record in making local gardens a real local focus for involvement, benefit and development of environmental skills and knowledge."

The development of the space under the Westway has been an amazing transformation story for an area not considered when the road was planned 40 years ago. A campaign by community groups has resulted in the Trust now being financially self-supporting having developed a skate park, fully-equipped sports centre and office space for local companies.

Tavistock Gardens (W11) and The Westway Development Trust have also been named on a list of the country's eight "Inspiring Spaces".

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March 27, 2004