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Poole Park improvements backed by councillors

Councillors have backed plans for major improvements to Poole Park, in support of a bid for nearly £3 million to the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF). 

Members of Borough of Poole’s Planning Committee voted unanimously at a meeting held on 15 June 2017 to grant the planning application, subject to conditions. 

The application includes proposals to improve play areas, footpaths, roads, car parking and access in the park. Other proposed improvements include better landscaping and drainage, dredging of the small and large freshwater lakes, and the creation of new islands in the lagoon and a new viewing platform for bird watching. 

This work is subject to the HLF bid being successful. 

Cllr Andy Garner-Watts, Chairman of the Planning Committee, Borough of Poole, said: "This project is great news and will refresh the park for many years to come; Poole Park is much loved and enjoyed by everyone in the borough and is something we can all be proud of. Thanks must go to the council’s team for their work on this and of course to the Friends of Poole Park for the work they do to maintain and preserve the park.” 

Martin Whitchurch, Poole Park Life Project Manager, Borough of Poole, said: "Poole Park is our premier open space in Poole. Over the last three years we have worked with all park users to develop proposals to improve and enhance this popular and historic park as part of the Poole Park Life bid. The extensive public consultation and feedback helped develop six themes covering Heritage and Landscape; Lakes and Lagoon; Access, Parking and Movement; Play; Geese and Wildlife. 

“These proposed improvements are in support of the Heritage Lottery bid and take a holistic and long term view of managing this park in the future. We are a few weeks away from the Heritage Lottery Fund’s decision on our bid and this planning permission will play an important part in helping them to make their decision.” 

Councillor John Rampton, Cabinet Portfolio Holder for the Environment, Borough of Poole, said: "Poole Park is a real gem in the heart of Poole. It is treasured by so many people so it is important that we seek to improve and protect the park for everyone to enjoy now and in the future.” 

The full application (APP/17/00378/F) can be viewed online at poole.gov.uk/planningapplications