A row of derelict arches underneath a flyover road gained something rather nice – a menagerie of concrete animals.

They were added a couple of years ago as part of a wider regeneration project that also saw the 120 metre length of unused spaces converted into spaces to be rented out – to a dance studio, gymnastics club and a church and community spaces.

The gaps were sealed off with wooden partitions and then a decision about how to decorate them.

Thamesmead is famous for its concrete, but rather less so for the considerable amount of wildlife that lives here, as much of Thamesmead is actually lakes and canals.

Based on feedback from the local community, design company Alphabetical commissioned the artist, Rebecca Sutherland to design these huge concrete animals that are based on animals often found in the area, such as the heron, kestrel, swan, water vole, and chaffinch, and garden favourite, the hedgehog.

They’re quite fitting, massive concrete sculptures of wildlife mounted onto wood between concrete.

They’re an award winning design.

And they’re also not at all visible unless you wander down here, to Byron Close, which makes finding them a bit more exciting.

Nearest railway stations

  1. Abbey Wood (London)
  2. Belvedere
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