This is a pocket park built on former railway sidings that is showing signs of its teenage years in appearance but does offer a unique view of a railway depot in compensation.

Created at the turn of the millennium, it’s one of 245 Millennium Greens created to mark the switch over from the year 1999 into 2000, and one of eight built in London.

This particular Millenium Green sits on land donated by Railtrack, and its successor, Network Rail still owns much of the land to the north of the park, a former goods shed and sidings.

Initially, I thought it was locked and abandoned, until I spotted a lone dog walker in the park, and while wandering around looking for the entrance saw the dog leave via what I thought was a locked gate. It turned out the road gate is locked, but a pedestrian entrance next to it has long since lost the gate and is how you get in now.

Even considering that it’s winter, this is a pocket park that has clearly seen better times, with a lot of graffiti-covered signs and rubbish dumped around the place. A grant of £5,000 given in 2021 to improve the park which I presume is still waiting to be spent.

In its favour though, is potential. As there’s the park is interestingly sculpted with a lot of hills and hollows to wander around. A number of timber sculptures are also dotted in the park, created by the local artist Alistair Lambert and are clearly railway inspired in places.

A few paths run around the edges of the park, but for some, the key feature is that one of the mini-hills gives a very good view of the mainline railway passing through Cricklewood and the Thameslink depot.

The park may get a bit larger soon, as the waste depot next to it is to be demolished and turned into blocks of flats. Part of the planning agreement includes giving part of the Donoghue site over to Millennium Green as additional public open space.

It might start to look a bit more loved then as well.

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One comment
  1. Andy says:

    Many moons ago before the park was put together, the council (I believe) put together a competition for local children to design the park and its features. I entered with a design which included a flower garden, meandering paths around trees and even an outdoor climbing wall (probably too ambitious!).

    For some reason, a hilly, bare landscape was chosen which I know for a fact the locals don’t like. It means you don’t know who’s round the corner when walking in the park, making you feel unsafe.

    In my opinion, a great example of poor council planning and lack of engagement or addressing feedback for a community asset. I’m clearly not bitter about not getting selected.

    Hopefully someone with some reason will design something better when the flats are built!

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