Allow FOGP to Complete the Arboretum on the Old Nurseries Site in Graves Park Now

Allow FOGP to Complete the Arboretum on the Old Nurseries Site in Graves Park Now

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Friends of Graves Park started this petition to Sheffield City Council

The Arboretum Extension in Graves Park

Way back in the late 1990s local people, in their droves, vigorously opposed the council selling this part of Graves Park for a housing estate, when the council and its parks department declared it “no longer in use and surplus to requirements”! After the Charity Commission confirmed that the site is charitable parkland and part of J G Graves’s gift to the people of Sheffield to be kept as parkland forever, the council was given 15 years to restore it back to parkland. Since then, volunteers from Friends of Graves Park have been working to restore this site to parkland.

The first part of this restoration, Chantreyland Meadow, opened in 2006 and the plans for the second section, the Arboretum, were already underway when the council once again declared the site derelict and tried to lease it to St. Luke’s Hospice, to move the hospice there. Once again the citizens of Sheffield opposed this and once again the council’s plans to dispose of the land were thwarted. The Friends continued the restoration of this section of the park and in 2016, the Arboretum officially opened to the public. Since then, the Friends have been requesting the release of the next section, as we have been ready for some time to restore it, but all our requests have fallen on deaf ears.

The Friends have finally received a formal response from the council – and it is not good news.

All written requests to the council regarding this issue received no response, until the latest one, where we wrote to the new executive member for parks, Councillor Alison Teal, who on 15th October 2021 wrote, “Park staff are unable to provide firm plans regarding what is happening with the depot land, therefore it needs to remain available. While I agree the current state of the depot is unattractive, the site is important for the council as there are few places across the city which can accommodate large machinery, etc.”

The council has at least confirmed that it has no intention of restoring this area back to parkland. It is also apparently still treating this as not being part of Graves Park, as it is now referring to it as “depot land”. This is totally unacceptable. The Friends are shocked and disappointed at this response. It is also very disappointing that until now they have not responded to our requests, yet knew what they were doing, as a considerable amount of hard-core has been put down on the site over the past year, presumably for the heavy machinery they are planning to park on the area. It would be interesting to know how much this cost the council taxpayer, or worse, the Graves Park Trust. Local people will also be aware that this site is used by the council to collect rubbish from all over Sheffield and activity involving rubbish collection goes on here at all hours of the day and night.

The Friends volunteers are ready to start the restoration and have offered to fund the work involved. If you agree that this area should be restored to parkland as soon as possible, please support us in our campaign by signing this petition.

For more information on Chantreyland Meadow and Arboretum, Visit:

https://friendsofgravespark.org/

0 have signed. Let’s get to 1,500!
At 1,500 signatures, this petition is more likely to get picked up by local news!