(R94) - CRYSTAL PALACE CAMPAIGN - NEWS BULLETIN 10 APRIL 2004
Crystal Palace Park Strategic Working Group (SWG) Meeting - 5 April 2004
This meeting was the first after the Main Group public meeting of the Stakeholders Forum held on Saturday 13th March (our 15 March Press Release brought you up-to-date). It was greatly enlarged by the presence of many people associated with sport in the region, including representatives from Sport England and Sport London.
There were matters to deal with as delegated from the Main Group and outstanding issues still to be developed, these revolved around:
(i) sport at Crystal Palace and the setting up of a Sport Working Group (SpWG);
(ii) the ongoing constituents of the other working groups;
(iii) understanding the London Development Agency (LDA) plan for producing an overall strategy for the Park and sundry other items like the Friends of Crystal Palace Park proposal.
The Olympic Bid Team outlined the timetable for the Bid, something of the main criteria for deciding on training camps and the need for satellite facilities to be close to the main area and the principal arena (the lower Lea Valley). There will also be the use of "iconic places" such as Horse Guards Parade to make use of great historic venues. The 18th May 2004 will see the announcement of the "short list" of cities; November 2004 is the date for submissions of the full bid; Spring 2005 - final evaluation and, at last, the decision as to where the Olympic Games of 2012 will be held - 5 July 2005.
While the Olympics will have an influence on what happens at the NSC (National Sports Centre at Crystal Palace Park), decisions are needed now about the future irrespective of that outcome. The Main Group very clearly said that they wanted a significant sports provision in the Park to continue.
The LDA talked about the arrangements for dealing with the NSC. There is a complex interaction among the many organisations involved in information development in order to generate a Park Condition Survey by the end of May. This could enable the decision about the location of a new sports facility to be taken by the end of July, which will be sufficient time to allow it to be opened by 2008.
A Sports Working Group (SpWG) is to be set up in addition to the Strategic Working Group, now renamed the Park Working Group. The participant list of the SpWG was defined and names generated to fill the places. The group will work closely with the LDA to establish the needs and possibilities of NSC improvements. Their input is vital to the success of the NSC project.
LDA WORKPLAN AND FUTURE DISCUSSIONS
The LDA have developed a complicated network of bodies to provide the basis for deciding on how various parts of the Park can be dealt with. The various working groups are going to fit into that process but it will require a decent effort to keep the wheels turning. A small subgroup, called the Process Working Group, has been delegated to handle communication between groups (i.e. the Park, Sports and Main Group) and between them and the public. The last is a difficult but absolutely essential task which has been somewhat neglected until now
OTHER MATTERS - Friends of Crystal Place Park
Reports of the meeting held on 2 April concerning the setting up of a friends group were mixed! About 60 people turned up and decided to set up a friends group, details, constitution, membership etc. yet to be decided. The meeting Chairman was not able to be present at the SWG meeting as planned. After some debate amongst SWG people, it was generally felt that if yet another group wanted to form themselves into "friends", so be it - it was not worth further discussions in a very busy programme. If the "friends" intention was to undermine the working of the Stakeholders Forum, they failed to do so. In theory, they could apply to the next Main Group meeting and ask to be included in the working group meetings.
The Stakeholders' Forum process really took a significant turn today in that their deliberations are being tied closely into the work being done by the LDA. The feeling was that here was real progress in pushing forward the fortunes of the Park. The sports facilities will almost certainly be resolved quickly and the new structure of sub-groups will backup the good work already achieved with a move towards action.
So the Stakeholders' Forum sub-groups are now:
The Crystal Palace Campaign continues to provide a watching brief and disseminate news to the community on developments that affect Crystal Palace Park. Our website at www.crystal.dircon.co.uk <http://www.crystal.dircon.co.uk/> is constantly up-dated.
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15/4/04 Last updated