St.James' Park - Restoration & Improvement
Heritage Lottery Fund Grant
|Click on any of the plans below to see a larger.|
Updated: 5th September 2011
Encouraged by support from Southampton City Council, FoSJP submitted a pre-application to the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) and was successful in winning a grant to pay for a full bid to win further funds. This grant allowed us to employ Parklife, a consultancy firm which prepared a proposal to submit to the HLF to obtain large-scale funding for the development of the Park.
Parklife shared some very exciting proposals with us; it was good to see that they listened to us all about what we'd like at St.James' Park. Parklife's plans were submitted to the HLF in Spring 2008, and in October 2008 the results were announced - our application for a full-scale bid had been successful.
|The Park was awarded £64,500 to develop plans for an improvement scheme totalling £1.5 million, including a ring-fenced £400,000 from Southampton City Council.|
Parklife, which became Cracknell in July 2008, worked on updated plans (on the right of this page) for the Park which were submitted to the Heritage Lottery Fund in May 2009, as part of the second stage of our application.
|On 15th October 2009, it was officially announced that our second stage bid had been successful!|
This success released a total of £1.5 million to make significant improvements to the Park and its facilities, and to fund associated community initiatives such as research into the history of St.James' Park through FoSJP's Shirley Heritage Project.
Many thanks for this must go to our partners, Southampton City Council, but also to everyone who helped and supported us on the way.
|Visit our Press Reports page for links to newspaper articles, radio interviews, and a BBC News website video related to this news.|
|||Other than the name, there is no connection between ParkLife Community Interest Company, established by FoSJP in November 2010 to run the new café and community room, and the former Parklife consultancy that became Cracknell in July 2008.|
Updated: 12th May 2012
The Park was restored and improved for the whole community to continue to enjoy:
- The Kiosk building, which is a former Air Raid Precautions warden shelter, was refurbished and extended to provide a café with indoor and outdoor seating areas, a community room, and toilets.
- The old playground and Rose Garden were transformed into a re-landscaped Young Play Area and upgraded with new play equipment, including toddler swings, a playhouse and slide, larger swings, a sand pit, a zipwire, play towers with climbing ropes and slides, and a water feature: all protected behind dog‑proof fencing again.
- The old tennis courts were replaced by a new Games Area, with climbing wall, basketball hoop with half-court, and outdoor gym equipment, to improve the provision of formal and informal play, using designs by local children and providing features for all ages.
- New Tennis Courts were built on the grass area behind the Building, fully enclosed and with a modern asphalt playing surface.
- A new "feature" SE Entrance was created from St.James' Road, close to its junction with Church Street, to improve access to visitors from the east of the Park.
- A new "low key" NE Entrance was created near the junction of Winchester Road and St.James' Road to improve access to the Park.
- The existing NW, W, and S Entrances were all refurbished.
- A Scenic Walkway with viewing areas across the Park was created along the north bank by Winchester Road.
- Part of the old Rose Garden was transformed into a Botanical Walk, with a focal point Gazebo looking out over the Central Pitch.
- A new pathway was created along the south side of the Central Pitch.
As well as the landscaping and building works outlined above, more than 40 new trees - mostly indigenous species, with some hardy exotics - were planted in St.James' Park, as well as a large number of smaller shrubs:
- 19 Cherry Trees
- 13 Palm Trees
- 6 Euodia
- 3 London Planes
- 2 Oaks
- Field Maple
These additional plantings compensated for the unexpected and sad loss of three cherry trees in the Playground, each of which was found to have succumbed to terminal fungal diseases and had to be removed for safety reasons; the removal of a holly tree to make way for the new SE Entrance; and the removal of three conifers to allow room for the Building to be extended.
All tree removals were approved by Southampton City Council's Trees Team.
The diagram above right indicates where the new trees were planted.
Restoration & Improvement Works
Updated: 12th May 2012
In February 2010, Southampton City Council's framework of contractors was invited to tender quotes for implementing the development plans. After assessing both price and quality of the submitted tenders, in May 2010 the contract for the capital works to restore and improve St.James' Park was awarded to Graham Moyse Contractors Ltd. (GMC) of Fareham.
GMC moved into the Park on 28th June 2010, and after setting up their site compound and access routes, started development work on 12th July 2010 as directed by Cracknell and monitored by Southampton City Council, FoSJP, and the Heritage Lottery Fund.
Southampton City Council and FoSJP decided to keep the Playground and the Building, including the FoSJP Kiosk, open throughout Summer 2010 to minimise disruption to Park users; these areas were then released to GMC on 6th September 2010.
The Mayor of Southampton officially declared the new Park to be open at a special ribbon‑cutting ceremony held during FoSJP's Play in the Park! event on 16th July 2011.
The Development Work in Pictures
The photos below illustrate just some of the work undertaken during the development work in the Park, from June 2010 to July 2011.
|(All photos in this section by Helen Hazlewood or Martin Gardner)|