Chandos Park

The Edgware Brook which currently runs along the edge of the park behind a fence will be re-aligned, bringing it further into the park and adding meanders to enhance the ecological value of the river and allow it to become a more integral part of the park.

A former idea to create a wetland in the north west corner of the park has been deemed to be unfeasible due to the topography (lay of the land) in that part of the park. Instead the river will be brought further into this area as a meander.

Where is Chandos Park?

Chandos Park is in the London Borough of Harrow just to the West of Edgware. It is also known as Chandos Recreation Ground. Click here for link to Google Maps

What phase is Chandos Park at?

Designs finalised: Taking feedback from a community mapping workshop and two co-design workshops Metis Consultants and LUC (Landscape architects) have worked to produce a detailed design for the site. Tree surveys and ecological surveys have taken place this summer (2023).

These designs were revealed to the public on September 23rd in Chandos Park and the project team were there to explain the designs and hear feedback from the local community who attended.

Throughout the winter, the required permits will be obtained from the Environment Agency and planning teams to ensure that by Spring 2024, everything is in place for work to begin. The tendering process for the main contractor will also begin at the end of this year.

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Chandos Park Proposed Designs

The Edgware Brook is situated to the northern boundary of the park at the bottom of the hill and is currently screened off from view with fencing and overgrown vegetation. Through these proposals the project aims to realign the water course and integrate it further into the park allowing for greater visual amenity and the opportunity for habitat creation and increased biodiversity, whilst improving the flood capacity through new meanders and channel widening. The works will involve some vegetation and tree clearance as well as fence removal, new planting is proposed to re provide, diversify, and improve the habitat along the water course route.

The existing path by the brook will be rerouted to provide greater views into the water course with new opportunities for resting and seating at several proposed viewing platforms. The new route will be brought further into the park to improve sight lines and increase points of interest. Wetland species will be planted along the river bank and in the channel to create wildlife habitat, improve water quality and slow the flow. Large wood deflectors and natural gravels will be added to diversify flow condition and further increase habitat complexity. A few trees will need to be removed to make space for the re-routing of the stream but many more trees will be planted to replace those lost, particularly along the new river footpath and also along the Camrose Avenue side of the park.

These comments and questions were recorded at co-design workshops and community consultation days.

What aspects of the project are you excited about?

Viewing area by the brook

Improves the park and play area – long overdue!

Stream being part of the park

Will make the area look cleaner

Great to have stream in the park

Better family area, safe for kids, better outdoor space for all ages

Questions, comments and concernsResponses
When will the works start?The works are planned to start at Chandos Park in Spring 2024.
How long will the works take?We expect that the works will take between 6 and 9 months to complete. However, this is subject to contractor availability, weather and other unexpected situations out of our control that may arise and delay progress.
Will the park be closed during the works?The park will not need to be fully closed for the whole of the project. Work will be phased and whilst work is taking place in one area, the other areas will remain open. We will do our best to ensure that disruption to use of the park is kept to a minimum.
How much is this costing and how is it being funded?This project is funded by Defra as part of the £150 million Flood and Coastal Resilience Innovation Programme which is managed by the Environment Agency to develop and test new approaches to resilience tailored to local communities. Action for Silk Stream was awarded £6million and this will be spent across all of the project sites in Barnet and Harrow. In addition, Chandos Park has also received £300K funding from the GLA as part of the Green and Resilient Spaces fund and £200K match funding from Harrow Council.
Will there be lighting in the park?There are no plans currently to (re)introduce lighting to the park along the paths.
Who is going to look after the park when the works have been completed to make sure it remains in a good state of repair? Is there a plan for the future?Action for Silk Steam is collaborating with the River Trust for innovative financing that will focus on obtaining long term revenue funds for maintenance of the project after construction. This will ensure sustainability of the improvements to the river and land within those parks. A 10 year management plan will be produced as part of the project programme. The Council’s Parks/Green teams will ensure the upkeep and maintenance of the parks with the assistance of volunteers (i.e. stewardship/legacy).
Lack of bridge and access to the other side of the river.A bridge could cause an obstruction during high flows – it would have to be very high and wide to avoid this which would make it difficult from an engineering and cost perspective. The land the other side of the river is designed as a limited access wildlife area and buffer zone between the park and the properties. Defensive planting of thorny species along the boundary will discourage access to the properties. Once the bank has been re-profiled so that it has a shallower slope it will extend almost all the way to the properties, so that the area of land the other side of the river will be relatively small.
Could we create a boardwalk that allows more of a connection to the river but doesn’t provide access to the other side?The design team will explore opportunities for creating a dipping platform to facilitate access to the river for river dipping and provide a place to observe the river more closely.
Would the other side of the river be used by rough sleepers?See above. The area of land will be small and have defensive planting which will discourage rough sleeping. The area will also be open and visible from the park with lines of site maintained, further discouraging rough sleeping.
What will the new path that runs along the re-aligned river be surfaced with?There was a preference in the meeting that the new path would be sealed so that it is more erosion resistant and allows vehicle access to the electricity sub-station at the north-east corner of the park.    
How deep will the water be?This has not yet been modelled in detail but will be considered as part of the final design. As the channel will be widened the water depth will be shallower than it is currently. The banks will also be made less steep to provide safe routes out of the river in case of someone falling in.
What is the sequence of construction? Will the new channel be dug before the old one is filled in?The site will be cordoned off and clearing will commence. The new channel will be excavated with material laid out alongside the existing channel. The old channel will be dammed and the new channel brought online. The existing channel will then be filled with existing material. The footpath will be constructed last to avoid machinery tracking over it and causing damage.

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