There are two interesting parks at RAR, the Berkeley Homes project in Woolwich.Read more: Two interesting parks at RAR
Wellington park is a pleasing open green space, a formal park which is cleverly built over an underground car park – why don’t we see more of these garden car parks?
The park is named after the Duke of Wellington who was Master General of the Ordnance from 1818-27 and his statue originally stood at the Tower of London where the Board of Ordnance was based. The Board was responsible for supplying arms and ammunition to the army and navy. The statue was moved to the Arsenal in 1863 and to the park in 2005.
Maribor Park was conceived as a ‘bold new green space providing a link between Woolwich Town Centre and the River Thames.’1 However, it will only be a long, narrow park with a linear water feature, the shape echoing the Ropewalk which used to be in Beresford Street.
It is not yet completed but elements of the park can be found.
The Royal Brass Foundry of 1716-17 was the first building designed to manufacture guns for both the army and the navy. The Master Founder was Andrew Schalch who came from Switzerland to establish the Foundry. He was replaced by the Verbruggens.
A tiny paved space hidden alongside the Foundry is The Source, the beginning of the linear water feature. This is an attractive small and very formal square with running water which attracted the pigeons on my visit.
From The Source the water will run to The Sensory Gardens, The Lawn and The Piazza (still to come), The Terraces, The Delta and the river. The signpost here is somewhat misleading as this is only one part of the final Maribor Park
The Temporary Park
Heading towards the river we next find the ‘Temporary Park’ which is an attractive open green park. There is a wildflower meadow and young trees on undulating ground which is criss-crossed with paths. Sadly the park’s life is very limited as the space is destined for yet more high-rise flats.
The Terraces and Cascades
Here, on the edge of the river, water fountains provide interesting displays and give a lot of pleasure to children, dogs, and adults.
The Thames Path runs in front of RAR, known as the Riverfront Park by Berkley Homes, who have made interesting plantings along the path. It is a pleasant walk.
f you look over the railings you can see Warren Lane Stairs which once had a public draw dock and a ferry which ran to the north bank.
The Royal Arsenal Riverside development is an interesting site to visit, but it is a pity that The Temporary Park will not be allowed to continue.