The rather neglected lawn next to Moorgate tube station is to get a makeover, to be replaced with a number of raised planted beds, and a bust of John Keats to commemorate the poet’s birthplace and work.

Moorgate and London Wall junction

The lawn was laid out as part of the neighbouring Moor House office development when it was completed in 2004, and was always intended to be a temporary greenspace until long-term plans were made. The current lawn has lasted rather longer than expected.

Although not intended to last this long, it’s an improvement on what was there before. The space occupied by the oval lawn could be better described as a roundabout before the lawn arrived, with the London Wall road splitting at this point.

Street layout when Moor House was planned (c) City of London planning portal

Plans to replace the lawn have been under development for a while and will see the single lawn, currently surrounded by a thin hedge, replaced with several raised areas filled with bedding plans and several new trees.

More seating will be added, and the design will also use permeable paving to allow more rainwater to soak into the ground and not run into sewers — which is good for both the sewers and the trees they’re planting.

Apart from the landscaping, a bronze bust of the poet John Keats, created by Martin Jennings, will be installed next to the revamped park, in a location close to where Keats was born.

A consultation last year was generally positive, although concerns were raised that the loss of the lawn meant less space for people to stand around drinking pints. However, slightly more seating will be added, so there’s a modest counterbalance.

However, although there’s less standing room, the extra trees and lots of bedding plants are likely to significantly improve the visual impact of the often shabby lawn and bedraggled hedge that is there today.

Final concept image (c) City of London Streets and Walkways Sub (Planning and Transportation) Committee

Construction works are planned to commence this autumn.


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One comment
  1. Chas says:

    It would be good to see the missing letters in the adjacent preserved signage of the former Fox’s umbrella shop reinstated.

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