The planning application for the highly controversial plans to stage the Olympic horseriding events in Grade 1-listed Greenwich Park was published by the council yesterday. What was always a bonkers idea – the park is far too small and fragile – turns out to be even worse than I expected.
It turns out that parts of the park will be closed for more than five years – starting in only a few months’ time – and the park will not be fully returned to its current state until 2015. The main events themselves will last… two weeks.
There will be more than 6,000 lorry movements and 35,000 movements by other vehicles into the park. Trenches will be dug, trees – including main branches – pruned. A 9-foot chain-link fence topped wth CCTV cameras will be installed all round the park.
The documents also admit the possibility that some heritage features of the park will never be restored, because they will be permanently destroyed. Councillors are expected to decide the application within three months. Read my full analysis of the main document over at the hyperlocal site, greenwich.co.uk, here.