Residents, families and council members celebrated the reopening of the Victoria Park with ‘A Monument To The Future’ on Saturday with the local Mayor saying it is now the “Jewel in the Crown of the East End.”
With help from the Heritage Lottery Fund and the Big Lottery, Tower Hamlets council spent £12m regenerating the 170-year-old park prior to the Olympic Games, which will take place just across the A12.
The event took place surrounding the grandstand, in the shadow of the refurbished area. The park now houses four large slides, new playground equipment, extensive gardens and a Chinese pagoda beside one of Victoria Park’s lakes.
Mayor of Tower Hamlets, Lutfur Rahman, used the park and facilities when he was younger. Mayor Rahman described it as: “A jewel in the crown of the East End.”
He added: “Generations after generations have used the open space and we want to ensure that it is bestowed to our community and our future generations in a state that we can be proud of. So when the opportunity came…to invest money in this park…I took on that opportunity, and here we are today.
“I’m very supportive of this park being open to every member of our community. We are very grateful it is on the doorstep to Olympic Park and that we will be part of the Olympic festivities coming on to next August.”
Hear Mayor Rahman’s thoughts on the park restoration here:
Local resident, Sarah Jane, thinks the park’s regeneration is “fantastic” but feels the community could be a bit stronger. She said: “The East End has got so much to give, but the communities are not pulling together anymore.
“We’ve got parks being built everywhere, why can’t there be somebody from Tower Hamlets to say ‘alright, let’s have a football session’?”
Hear Sarah Jane’s full interview here: