Dukes Meadow - Putting the record straight

The Council is aware that the Dukes Meadow Trust have raised concerns regarding changes to the parking arrangements at Dukes Meadow

Published: Thursday, 12th September 2019

Dukes Meadows

The Council is aware that the Dukes Meadow Trust have raised concerns regarding changes to the parking arrangements at Dukes Meadow and have publicly stated that they are ‘alarmed and dismayed’ even though planning permission has been granted, with the full and proper consultation undertaken. 

The purpose of these changes is to formalise the parking arrangements in the park, which are often chaotic and can raise safety concerns, with informal parking often leading to damage to the park environment.  Under these plans, parking on the carriageway is to be restricted across the whole of the park through the use of double yellow line waiting restrictions.  In line with the planning consent, spaces on the verges along Dan Mason Drive and the Promenade, which are often already used for parking on occasions, are to be formalised for use by parking and tidied up.  A charge is to be payable at the weekends. Taken together these changes will not increase the amount of parking space provided, nor encourage additional vehicles into the park.  

Concerns have been raised about the introduction of ‘coach turning circles’, turning spaces for large vehicles are already in situ onsite in the form of two hard standing areas near the bandstand on the Promenade.  The proposals simply seek to restrict these spaces for that use by preventing long term parking.  No new space for large vehicle turning is proposed. 

Kathleen Healy from Dukes Meadow Trust received a letter (3 September 2019) from Peter Matthew, Executive Director Housing, Planning & Communities which responds in detail to the Trust’s concerns. 

Leader of Hounslow Council, Cllr Steve Curran said: “I am satisfied that the proper planning process and consultation has been followed, I would like to quote the following paragraph from Peter Matthew’s letter to the Trust: 

“I am sorry that you feel the assessment of the proposal in the committee report was lacking. I have reviewed the report and see that it deals extensively with the designation of the land as Metropolitan Open Land and assesses the proposal in line with National, Regional and Local planning policy. The committee presentation (the PowerPoint put up on the projector during the meeting) specifically identifies the new parking on the Promenade and I understand that this was also verbally confirmed on the night. ln my opinion, it was very clear that these spaces were part of the planning application in front of the planning committee for decision.” 

Cllr Steve Curran added; “The masterplan for Dukes Meadow is now making significant progress and we have secured financial investment from the Council and other bodies, in particular the RFU who have invested in a new 3G pitch with floodlights at Chiswick Rugby Club. Plans are also well underway for a new pedestrian bridge under the Barnes Railway Bridge. In addition, we have made improvements to the promenade by the bandstand and held our first Oxford and Cambridge boat race event for many years which was deemed by all, a great success. We also work very closely with the London Wildlife Trust who manage the Duke's Hollow, nature reserve on our behalf, who were also involved in developing our masterplan.

“All of this has been achieved through detailed and extensive consultations with our tenants, leaseholders and users of Dukes Meadow. Unfortunately, the Trust has never embraced these plans and improvements which is very disappointing. The Council, like the Trust, is committed to providing high quality leisure, sport and open spaces for all.”

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