Last week PLACED teamed up with Common Good to put on an event which aimed to talk about the amazing role of public parks in our towns and cities. Hosted in BirkenEd’s Place, our community engagement hub in Birkenhead, we covered some history of public parks, heard about Birkenhead’s biggest contribution to date to the world of public parks, and looked to the future with the plans for Dock Branch Park.
The history of public parks is both fascinating and important to remember give the key role parks play in helping to keep our urban places liveable for people and wildlife alike. To illustrate that we heard about the creation of Peel Park in Salford back in the 1840s. If you’re interested in the history, you can read more here: Full article: A Park for the People: examining the creation and refurbishment of a public park (tandfonline.com)
Coming back to Birkenhead we heard from the Friends of Birkenhead Park about how the park was established, how their group came to be and how today they help to keep the park looking good and well cared for. We also heard about the recent success in recognising the importance of public parks as Birkenhead Park was added to the UK’s tentative list for UNESCO World Heritage Site status (a sort of waiting list for UK places which hope to be nominated for World Heritage Site status in the future). A great thing for the park and for public parks in general.
Jumping off from established historic parks we looked to one of Birkenhead’s next innovations, the creation of a public park in the former Dock Branch railway cutting. The landscape architects and architects for the Dock Branch projects related to the park and the potential development around the park told us about the designs and how they’re hoping to create a great new green space and kick start further development.
As ever, it was great to welcome people into BirkenEd’s Place and to collect feedback and views from local people on how change and development can best support the community. You can share your views by popping into BirkenEd’s Place (8-10 Borough Pavement, Birkenhead, CH41 2XX). Displays and information on Dock Branch Park and Neighbourhood will be up until Saturday 12 August. You will also be able to share your views online in the coming weeks: Have your say Wirral.