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 audience at event in broomfield parkBroomfield Park - at the heart of our community

Live music to fairgrounds, open-air cinema to Palmers Green Festival – what do you like and what would you like to see in the future? Or do you just want peace and quiet?

You can influence the events organised for 2019 through this 5-minute survey from Friends of Broomfield Park.

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Breathing Again follows Palmers Green resident Patrick Samuel, an artist with autism and ADHD, as he prepares for his sixth solo exhibition. Shot on location in Broomfield Park, Patrick, accompanied by his emotional support dog Chase, shares what it’s like living and coping with autism, how art has changed his life and why going to the park is such an important part of his daily routine.

Breathing Again is the short film that premiered at @The_Dugdale. Shot in #BroomfieldPark as I was preparing the exhibition, the film gives a glimpse into how I use art as a coping mechanism, and the park as inspiration.

Patrick's exhibition, Passing Time - Moments in Broomfield Park, continues until 27th October at the Dugdale Centre.

Your invitation to a guided tour of the exhibition

On Thursday 18th October, between 5pm and 7pm, Patrick will be personally guiding visitors around the 37 pictures and their accompanying poems.  Hear the stories behind each of these pieces and ask any questions along the way.

As someone with autism and ADHD, these guided tours offer Patrick an opportunity to use his art to engage with the community and increase his social skills and confidence.  Join him for a wonderful, relaxed and friendly tour.

More information on Patrick's Facebook page.

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enfield in bloom logoenfield in bloom broomfield conservatoryA Gold award for Broomfield Conservatory from Enfield in Bloom

The Friends of Broomfield Park and Tottenhall Infants School are among those celebrating after the announcement of the winning entries for this year's Enfield in Bloom competition.

Broomfield Conservatory was awarded Gold in the Exceptional Horticultural Contribution to the Community - Small Displays category.

Two other park features created and maintained by the Friends of Broomfield Park also won awards.  Silver for Broomfield Community Orchard in the Exceptional Horticultural Contribution to the Community - Large Displays category and Silver for the Broomfield Park Wildlife Pond in the Best Environmental and Wildlife Garden category.

enfield in bloom broomfield community orchardA Silver award for the Community Orchard

 enfield in bloom broomfield park wildlife pondThe Wildlife Pond was entered in the competition for the first time this year

Tottenhall Infants School won a Bronze award in the category Best School Grounds with Environmental and Educational Aspect.

Enfield in Bloom - Tottenhall infants schoolTottenhall Infants School pupils in their flower-filled school grounds

To see photographs of all the Enfield in Bloom winners visit

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broomfield park wetlands plan

The project to create a wetlands area in Broomfield Park is to be discussed at the meeting of the Enfield Council Planning Committee on 25 September.

wetlands location

The wetlands site in the SE corner of the "top field"

The proposed scheme is designed to provide the following benefits:

  • Improved surface water quality via replenishment through the creation of wetland treatment cells (the surface water drainage network for this area flows towards Pymmes Brook further downstream);
  • Increased biodiversity by creating habitat for a variety of wildlife;
  • New amenity feature in the park; and
  • Reduce flood risk through the storage of water following extreme rainfall.

An objection was received from the London Park and Garden Trust, who consider that the harm caused to the heritage asset (in this case, the appearence of parkland outside the walled area) would not be outweighed by the benefits, which they consider unproven.  The Enfield Conservation Advisory Group also object to the scheme on the same grounds.

Further serious concerns have been raised by Historic England and in a letter from Colin Younger, chair of the Broomfield House Trust.  These objections and concerns are set out in some detail in the Planning Committee Report.

Despite these objections and concerns, council planning officers are recommending that the scheme be approved.

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Colin Younger's Avatar
Colin Younger posted a reply #4062 20 Sep 2018 12:46
To be clear, I'm not objecting to the scheme. My concern is that an area of one hectare is to be covered to a depth of half a metre with spoil from the excavation, without an prior investigation of that area. What proposed is an archeological watching brief of the excavation area, which is fine, but there's nothing about the area to be buried.
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PGC Webmaster posted a reply #4073 26 Sep 2018 22:44
The planning committee meeting on Tuesday night reportedly refused planning permission for the proposed wetlands scheme in Broomfield Park.

Hopefully, someone who was at the meeting can provide more details...
Colin Younger's Avatar
Colin Younger posted a reply #4078 27 Sep 2018 00:44
I attended the Planning Committee on the 25th September which considered this proposal. Full details of the application can be found on the Planning Committee website.


In addition to the strong concerns raised by Historic England and the Parks and Gardens Trust, Councillors questioned whether there was a flooding risk which the proposal claimed to alleviate. None could recall any past flooding, or see any risk which justified this scheme.

There were also unanswered questions about how the wetland would be maintained: the report noted that this would be beyond the capacity of the Friends of Broomfield Park, and there was no identified Council funding for maintenance.

SUDs schemes in Forty Hall had fallen in to disrepair and were overgrown, and ones in Town Park appeared not to be working properly.

The conclusion was that the scheme was damaging, unnecessary, and not sustainable, and it was therefore rejected.
David Eden's Avatar
David Eden posted a reply #4188 07 Nov 2018 09:16
Successful at the second time of asking, I understand, last night.
Basil Clarke's Avatar
Basil Clarke posted a reply #4208 14 Nov 2018 23:41

As noted by David above, the Planning Committee reconsidered the application (by the council itself) for the wetlands scheme in Broomfield Park at their meeting on 6th November (where it was the only application on the agenda) and this time approved it.

The initial refusal is recorded in the minutes of the 25th September meeting . Go to item 759.

The minutes aren't yet available for the meeting where the committee did approve the application. But the paperwork for the meeting is available, including a revised report submitted by the Executive Director - Place . The revised report - which, like its predecessor, recommends approval - takes account of a detailed response from the council's planning department to the conclusions of the 25th September meeting. One of the points made is clarification of the attitude of the Friends of Broomfield Park - between the two meetings the Friends wrote to point out that, contrary to the impression given earlier, they had always been in favour of the scheme. They also pointed out that the assertion by the Gardens Trust that the Friends do not have the capacity to help maintain the wetlands was made without discussing the subject with the Friends.

I understand that another reason for the initial rejection was that the danger of flooding in the vicinity of Broomfield Park was seen as insufficiently high. However, it's important to use all available opportunities to create wetlands to slow down and clean the flow of water into the Pymmes Brook because the streams running through the western parts of the borough all flow towards areas of Edmonton where houses are prone to flooding - see the map below.

It is for this reason that the major piece of water engineering was carried out in the Grange Park area a few years ago to store water from the Salmons Brook - to the fury of some local agitators who didn't want to put up with the construction traffic or the risk that their local golf course might be under water for a few days - water which otherwise would be inundating people's houses in Edmonton.

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The Mayor of London is inviting groups to apply for Community Green Space Grants:

Do you want to create or improve a green space in your neighbourhood, and improve Londoners' access to nature? Or do you want to green your school playground to protect students from air pollution? We’re looking for projects across the capital that will make the city greener and give Londoners the chance to get involved.

Applications close at 5pm on Monday 1 October 2018. Projects should take place between January 2019 and January 2020.

More details are available on the website.

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In the wake of the successful campaign to cancel a planned 24-day long fair (see this earlier report), the Friends of Broomfield Park (FoBP) have called on Enfield Council to establish a better system of consultation about future events in the park.

lime tree avenue replanting

Many lime trees in this double avenue had to be replaced because of damage caused by a circus

FoBP co-chairs Kim Lumley and Chris Kaufman have written to Councillor Guney Dogan, the cabinet member for the environment, expressing disappointment about not being invited to the recent meeting between the council and "4 Not 24" campaigners and more generally communicating their unhappiness about lack of consultation and about Broomfield Park's status since 2016 as "suitable for all events, including large-scale events", ie those with attendances in excess of 5000 persons a day. They argue that Broomfield Park is a small park surrounded by residential streets, very different from parks which the council classes as "Major", eg Trent Park and Enfield Playing Fields. The co-chairs write that, though the Friends were consulted about two proposed "Major Events" in 2018 (neither of which went ahead), they also "feel strongly that there should be a further level of advance notification and consultation with the Friends organizations before booking Medium events and that these should include circus and fairground events".

The FoBP letter also raises concerns about the council's suggestion, in its letter to the "4 Not 24" campaigners, that it might resume rotating events between the sports field and the western end of the park. The co-chairs point out that use of the top field for events has in the past resulted in damage to paths and grass and in particular mention the death of 13 lime trees as a result of damage caused by a circus. These trees, forming part of a double avenue, had to be replaced at great expense.

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David Eden's Avatar
David Eden posted a reply #3966 12 Jul 2018 11:40
Not sure how the FoBP can complain about not going to the 4Not24 meeting - Kim is a member of the FoBP Facebook group and the posting regarding Coggers fair, the upset and the interaction with the Council (as well as the meeting) got masses of fanfare and publicity.

FoBP are asleep at the wheel if they had no idea any of this is going on - just not doing their jobs properly, hard work has all come from Dan Baer it seems.
Dan Baer's Avatar
Dan Baer posted a reply #3967 13 Jul 2018 00:02
Hi David, thanks for the credit! But I was one of a passionate group of 30 locals who successfully campaigned on this issue.
In fairness to FoBP, Sue Younger wrote a strong email to the Councillors, on behalf of the FoBP Committee, in support of 4not24. Also several committee members attended the meeting in BP.
FoBP has had many successes over the years including the orchard, the conservatory, the cafe etc
I think they have an important role to play under the new co-chairmanship of Kim Lumley and Chris Kaufman in conserving and improving the park.
Geraldine Anwar's Avatar
Geraldine Anwar posted a reply #3968 13 Jul 2018 07:55
Thanks Dan, for your clarification. David seems to have misunderstood the Friends' complaint. Members of the committee did attend the meeting in the Park. Despite their support they were not invited to a subsequent meeting between the Council and 4not24. The Friends are not primarily a pressure group. They are a group of volunteers who work to enhance the park. Dan lists some of the successes of the Friends. These projects are all run entirely by volunteers. Thousands of hours are spent volunteering in the park every year. Many other smaller projects such as the Dipali Garden, the Sensory Garden and more recently the Rose Bed are maintained by volunteers. The daffodils which appear by magic every Spring are planted by volunteers. The whips which will form a hedge to shield the park from surrounding roads are planted by volunteers. The wildlife pond was installed by volunteers. A grant was obtained to improve the Remembrance Garden. David's comment 'just not doing their jobs properly' says it all. Being a Friend of the Park is not a job! As far as I know a job is something that people are paid to do.
David Eden's Avatar
David Eden posted a reply #3969 13 Jul 2018 10:13
Thanks, both, for the additional clarification. It was this that threw me:

"FoBP co-chairs Kim Lumley and Chris Kaufman have written to Councillor Guney Dogan, the cabinet member for the environment, expressing disappointment about not being invited to the recent meeting between the council and "4 Not 24" campaigners."

I've no doubt that FoBP have done tremendous work, as a local resident and park user I'm a prime beneficiary, it just felt from the tone of this complaint that someone else (a group) put in the hard yards to sort out this particular issue and FoBP were complaining about not knowing about it or being widely involved despite wide publicity.

Well done Dan+30 for this and well done FoBP for everything else.

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The second Firs Farm Wetlands Summer Festival is this Saturday, 14th July, from 10.30 in the morning to 7pm.  There are too many things planned to list here, but remember that, as well as providing a great day of fun, entertainment, information and enjoyment of nature, the Festival has a serious aim - to raise money for the Firs Farm Community Hub project (see the end of this article for details).

firs farm summer festival 2018 schedule 700pxClick on the image for a larger version

 firs farm summer festival 2018 map 700pxClick on the image for a larger version

firs farm community cafe image

Our vision is to create a welcoming, flexible community space, in keeping with the wetlands, which is aesthetically pleasing and can be used by ALL.

We envisage that it will be constructed from sustainable, reclaimed materials, featuring "living walls", to blend into the habitat.

The Community Hub will be designed as an educational, recreation and social space which can be used by schools and the wider community.

proposed cafe location at Firs FarmProposed location of the Community Hub

We want it to be a special place for special people, catering for children and adults with special needs.

It will incorporate Enfield's first Changing Place Toilets, a dedicated space designed for children with autism, a sensory garden and other facilities that will make a difference to the lives of people with dementia and other life-inhibiting conditions.

proposed internal layout of community hubProposed internal layout

Promises are already starting to come in from all over London, but more business support is still needed.

Your contribution would be permanently recognised in Firs Farm Wetlands.

Download the business sponsorship leaflet

Please contact Toni Guiver
07956 537974

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PGC Webmaster posted a reply #3962 11 Jul 2018 19:56

Does your child want to be part of the wetlands-themed pageant on Saturday? All you have to do is dress up and come along to the wetlands at 1020am in the field close to the A10 by the metal outfall bridge.

There will be a sign and stewards there on the day. At 1030am the procession will be led around the wetlands to the festival stage where the judging will take place. Prizes for the best costume!!!

The photo shows some of the children who took part last time (2016).

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new river schemeBack in March 2016 we reported that a new green space was being created between the New River and Green Lanes between the junctions with Carpenter Garden and Barrowell Green.  There were signs that work was underway, but then it just stopped...

It turns out that negotiations between Enfield Council and Thames Water about leasing the strip of land proved to be rather protracted. But now work is restarting.

The project goes under the title New River Opportunities and it appears that the plans haven't changed since last year.

new river environmental improvementsAn artist's impression of the improved green space, from the Carpenter Gardens end


green space along new river

green space 41. A row of pin oaks with striking autumn colour planted along the site boundary. These provide screening for surrounding properties, but through having 2m clear stems they also allow for sight lines into the site from Green Lanes to be opened up.

green space 32. Boulders installed between trees and footpath to form a ‘play  on the way’ track for children and to stop vehicles from entering  the site. Subtle patterns on the boulders link to wildlife on the  New River.

green space 23. High quality, robust seats installed at seating area. Cycle stands  installed near the entrance off of the pedestrian/cycle path to  encourage people to stop and lock bikes safely before walking  into the green space.

green space 14. Planting areas with hardy, colourful plants create year-round  interest and contribute to site biodiversity

new river environmental improvements detail

The first person to post to the forums the function of the grey/black metal object next to the New River on the left of the picture wins a year's free subscription to the PGC newsletter.

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David Eden's Avatar
David Eden posted a reply #3958 10 Jul 2018 12:10
Wow, stunning, these will look absolutely amazing. Such an improvement.

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broomfield park fairs meeting Shelly Morgan300 people turned out for the protest meeting in Broomfield Park (Photo source: Facebook - Shelly Morgan)

A campaign against a planned funfair in Broomfield Park which would have lasted for 24 days has been successful.  The responsible Enfield cabinet member has written to neighbouring residents stating that the fair will not be held this year and that the council will be applying tighter conditions on future funfairs and circuses in the park to address the various issues raised by campaigners.

enfield council logo


Dear Resident...

3rd July 2018

Dear Resident

As you will be aware the Council has received a large number of objections relating to the Funfair which was proposed to take place at Broomfield Park from 10th August to 1st September for a total of 23 days.

We have reviewed your comments and appreciate your views in particular relating to the length of the funfair and have agreed that the funfair will not go ahead this year. Given your concerns and noting that a number of events which have been held in the area adjacent to the playground this has led to our final decision.

We recently met with representatives from the ‘4 not 24’ group to discuss specific concerns relating to the funfairs at Broomfield Park. We appreciate that there was a difference in opinion between those that stated that they did not want funfairs at Broomfield Park and those that could support one funfair a year:

Having taken your views into account in future we will propose the following recommendations for Funfairs at Broomfield Park:

The conditions requested are as follows:

  • Maximum of 4 days.
  • The fair to be specifically family orientated rides/children rides
  • The fair finishes by 7pm
  • Less pollution and noise from fair/generators/ rubbish
  • Location to be rotated around the park
  • Extra security
  • Less plastic waste ie paper straws etc
  • Healthier food and healthy options to be available

We will be meeting with the funfair organiser to discuss the above with him in due course for events in future years.

In relation to the Circus we have listened to your views and will consider relocating the Circus back to the original area in the western area of the park. The decision will be subject to a full consultation with residents and Councillors and we will be in touch in due course.

I hope that this shows that we do take on board your comments as we would across the whole borough and would like to reassure you we have robust systems in place when facilitating events in Parks and Open Spaces. I apologise for any inconvenience the recent events at Broomfield Parks have caused you.

Thank you once again for bringing these matters to my attention.

Yours Sincerely,

Cllr Guney Dogan
Cabinet Member - Environment

The campaign, under the name "4 Not 24", was launched after people living near Broomfield Park discovered that Cogger's had applied to run a fair from 10th August to 1st September, located on the sports field in close proximity to houses in Broomfield Avenue.  This news was the final straw for neighbours and other users of Broomfield Park, who were already concerned about changes in the frequency and nature of events in the park in recent times and their impact on the park and its environs. After initial online discussions on Palmers Green Community and Facebook, an open-air meeting in the park was arranged at short notice.

Strength of feeling

The strength of feeling became clear when some 300 people turned up at the meeting on 23rd June.  Among them were local MP Bambos Charalambous and councillors representing Palmers Green and Southgate Green wards. Attendees queued up to sign a paper petition using the same title, which reflects the view that a 4-day fair would be acceptable, but a 24-day event would not.  This was followed by an online petition, which has so far collected some 850 signatures.

Subsequently, three campaigners - Dan Baer, Penny Austin and Dave Thomas - were invited to a meeting at the Civic Centre, where they held discussions with deputy council leader Daniel Anderson, cabinet member for the environment Guney Dogan and senior council officers.

Confirmation that the meeting had been a success came yesterday in the form of a letter from Cllr Dogan stating that the planned August fair would not go ahead this year.  In the case of future fairs, the council will require that

  • the duration will be no longer than four days
  • the fair will comprise rides oriented specifically at families and children
  • the fair will finish by 7pm
  • there will be less pollution and noise from the fair and its generators and less rubbish
  • the location of the fair will be rotated around the park
  • there will be extra security
  • there will be less plastic waste, eg by using paper straws
  • healthier food will be available.

"I've never met such a committed and passionate bunch"

Dan Baer has expressed his delight not just with the outcome, but also with the way the community threw itself into the campaign:

"Working with my neighbours on this campaign has been an amazing experience. I’ve never met such a committed and passionate bunch, and my family and I feel very lucky to live here in Palmers Green. Hats off too to Enfield Council and all the councillors involved, as well as Bambos Charalambous MP, for engaging with us from the beginning and standing for us at the end.

"Finally, I look forward to taking my daughter to Coggers new improved funfair next summer. I think everyone will get behind it and ensure it’s a great success."

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David Eden's Avatar
David Eden posted a reply #3952 05 Jul 2018 09:57
Fairs are nice to have in the park, especially family focussed ones, but this one was ridiculous. Great response from the Council. Definitely feel blessed to be Enfield not a number of other authorities at times.

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open garden

arnos lodge map

This Sunday, for the eighth year in succession, a rather special garden is open to the public, raising money for the upkeep of the plants in Broomfield Conservatory.

The garden belongs to Elizabeth Dobbie, who more than anyone was responsible for turning an attractive but almost empty building into a wonderful place with a fascinating collection of plants.

You have a chance to see the Conservatory twice a week (Wednesday and Sundays), but only one more opportunity to visit Elizabeth's own garden, as this is the last year that she'll be opening it to the public.

Elizabeth's garden will be open from 2pm to 5pm. Admission is £2 and there will be plants and tea and cakes on sale, all proceeds going to the Conservatory.

On a personal note, I owe a debt of gratitude to Elizabeth for her work in setting up the conservatory committee and the team of volunteers who tend to the conservatory and open it to the public.  Before my first visit there I knew only four or five people in Palmers Green, but while I was there someone asked if I would be interested in volunteering as a steward.  I couldn't think of an excuse quickly enough so ended up meeting and greeting visitors once or twice a month and getting to know the other volunteers.  As a result  I now have many local friends.  It also led to me taking over the Friends of Broomfield Park website and then this one.  So if you're thinking of volunteering yourself, don't hesitate, you won't regret it!

Elizabeth Dobbie and the garden at Arnos Lodge

Geraldine Anwar, secretary of the Friends of Broomfield Park conservatory group, tells the story of the garden of Elizabeth's home - which, uniquely, is located within Arnos Park.

broomfield conservatory volunteersBroomfield Conservatory volunteers welcome in 2018. Elizabeth Dobbie is in the centre, showing off an award from Enfield in Bloom

Arnos Park Lodge is tucked away in a corner of Arnos Park opposite the tennis courts.  If you travel from Southgate, you may have glimpsed the house and garden as the London-bound Piccadilly line train approaches Arnos Grove Station.

When Elizabeth purchased the property in 2006 it was the Park Keeper’s house and very much part of the park.  The right side of the garden was hardstanding and used to store parks’ vehicles.  Elizabeth has turned this area into a gravel garden and attractive storage area.  The bin stores have a living roof.  Most of the garden was laid out to lawn.  The pond was already in place but was completely overgrown.  In 2007 Elizabeth started to transform the garden.

livingroofElizabeth has created a "living roof" on top of the bin storage area

Elizabeth said ,“I was living in Camden in a terraced house with a typical small inner city garden. It was always my ambition to have a large garden when I retired.”   Prior to her retirement Elizabeth went on courses run by the RHS and became a qualified horticulturist.  Initially her aim was to get part time work. In the end all her time and energy went into her own garden and then volunteering in Broomfield Park.

rosearchviewLooking through the rose arch in Elizabeth's garden

Elizabeth was one of the founder members of Friends of Broomfield Park committee.  The Council refurbished the Conservatory in 2010 with no plans for its future.  Elizabeth was persuaded to lead the team of volunteers who set out to create a fully planted and functioning Conservatory.  Her knowledge of plants and their care has been invaluable.  As well as the planting, Elizabeth has been involved in significant improvements.  She helped to track down the railings from the Palmers Green triangle which were then refurbished and installed in front of the Conservatory, enhancing its appearance.

pondviewThe pond in the garden of Arnos Lodge

Elizabeth has been opening her garden to the public since 2011.  It has been a significant fund raiser for the Conservatory. The seven openings have raised a total of £2,800.  All good things have to come to an end.  We would like this year to be special as a thank you to Elizabeth for all the effort she has put in over the years.  If you would like the chance to see a unique garden do come along on Sunday 24th June from 2.00-5.00pm 

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 broomfield conservatory

Broomfield Conservatory reopens on Sunday after some long overdue repairs and repainting.  As well as giving you a chance to catch up on the progress of the bananas and the many other wonderful plants, there's a talk about carnivorous plants given by Jean, one of the Friends of Broomfield Park volunteers whose special duty is to look after the collection of insect-eaters.

The Conservatory is open from 2.30 to 4.30 and the talk starts at 2.45pm.

Starting on Sunday the Conservatory will be open every Wednesday and Sunday from 2.30 to 4.30.  And it's not far from the Greenery Café, which is also open on Wednesdays and Sundays (plus Saturdays) and serves nice coffee and homemade cakes.

carnivorous plants

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Geraldine Anwar of the Friends of Broomfield Park has provided a summary of the reports given at the FoBP open meeting on 21st May.

The Open Meeting went ahead at Ruth Winston Centre on Monday evening.  The AGM was postponed until the autumn, as there were doubts raised that members had been correctly notified about the meeting.  It was agreed that the present committee should continue until the AGM.

bananas in broomfield conservatory jean davies

These bananas will look even more impressive by the time the Conservatory re-opens in mid-June (Photograph:  Jean Davies)

David March gave an update on the Orchard and related projects.  There had been a problem with vandalism, mainly arson attacks but some of the trees had been broken.  These have since been replaced. Five volunteers from Enfield Mencap work with David one afternoon a week and he has students on the Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme.  However, he always needs more volunteers especially as the orchard team have expanded their interest in the park. 

The new growing space is progressing well. It is hoped to build more raised beds. 

The wildlife pond is flourishing with the marginal plants coming into flower.  Dragonflies, newts and tadpoles have been seen in and around the pond. A fence has been erected to protect the pond from dogs and make it safer for small children.  The pond can be accessed by gates.   In the long term there will be information boards. Whips were donated by the Woodland Trust and planted along the border of Alderman’s Hill.  Some of those planted in previous years are starting to become established now.

The Bowls Clubhouse adjacent to the Orchard has subsidence.  The Council have appointed contractors.  There will be no access to the main part of the building while work is being carried out. David hopes to meet with the contractors.  Some of the equipment has been moved into another part of the building.

The Summer Picnic in the Orchard will be held on 1st July.

Ivor Evans reported on problems with the wild-flower meadows.  Thistles are proving to be a particular problem despite efforts of volunteers to remove them.  Part of the problem is that the soil is too rich.  The long term solution would be to remove a top layer and replace with low fertility soil on top of a membrane.  Then plant up with wild flower seeds.  On the plus side the wild flowers in the Orchard are looking lovely as they have optimum conditions.

cairn in broomfield park remembrance garden

Restoration of the Remembrance Garden is now complete

Elizabeth Dobbie reported on the Conservatory.  Work is ongoing to carry out major repairs and repainting.  Rotten woodwork has been replaced and a new door supplied.  Painting has been completed on the exterior and is now going ahead on the interior.  This means the Conservatory has to be closed to the public until about mid-June.  Volunteers who have undergone the Health and Safety induction still have access to tend to the plants on a daily basis.  Once work is completed there will be some replanting to be done.  Councillor Barry was very helpful in our dealings with the council.  Once the works have been completed there will be an event to thank her and the Council for their support.


Collin Younger reported on Broomfield House.  The Broomfield House AGM is on 5th June at 7.30pm in the Ruth Winston Centre. One of their priorities is to appoint a new treasurer.  The Council is asking for expressions of interest for the House and the Stable Yard.  The Trust would like to ensure community access but this is no way guaranteed.  It would be lovely if some visionary developer came forward and saved the day.  What is looking increasingly likely is that there will be no interest and the Council can then apply for consent to demolish a listed building. 

There will be an exhibition about Broomfield House and Park at the Dugdale Centre from 28th July. The central feature will be a restored panel from the Lanscroon mural which was in the House.

Sue Younger reported on the Remembrance Garden.  The water fountain has been replaced and this means that the project is now complete.  Work needs to be done to replace plants.  It is hoped that the garden will be kept open to the public during park opening times.

Work will start on the Wetlands in the summer.  There is, however, money to improve water quality in the existing lakes.  Reed beds will be planted in the two of the lakes.  Volunteers will be needed to help with this project.  Date and Time will be advertised.

A Home Schooling Group has been in touch with the Friends.  They are keen to become involved in the park.  They will work in conjunction with an organisation called Clean-up. 

The park has been categorised as a Large Park.  This means that there will be more events held in the park.  So far, the events suggested have not been held. The first event will be the Gin Festival on 30th June/1st July.  The Council do not need to consult the Friends unless there will be more than 5,000 visitors in the park for anyone session.  The Friends would like to be more involved.  It was suggested that the Friends supply the Council with constructive feedback following an event. 

The Royal College of Arts Students have finished their initial project in the park.  Some of the Friends had been to a presentation.  The students will be feeding back to the Council.  If there is any interest the project would continue.  One idea was to involve children in a digital park trail.

The ‘Fish and Chip’ van has been discussed with Council Officers.  There are two main objections to the van.  The first being that it is run on diesel and fumes are being discharged right next to the children’s playground.  This could be remedied if it was powered by electricity.  The other objection is that it does not fit with the Council’s healthy eating policy.  Enfield has one of the highest rates of childhood obesity and this van does not offer healthy options.  Response from the Council has not been helpful.  Anyone concerned should contact the Council to complain.

The next open meeting will be held in September - more information in due course.

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firs farm festival 2018

Friends of Firs Farm (a local registered charity) want their second Summer Wetlands Festival to be even better than their last, when more than 3000 people attended. They are still looking for more volunteers to help organise and run the day's fun and for more businesses to take up stalls and have a few sponsor opportunities left. The event is being organised to raise more funds for the Firs Farm Community Hub.

What's lined up for the 14th July Community Festival?

On the day you can expect:

  • to listen to musicians, young and old across a range of genres,
  • dogs putting on a show,
  • enjoy the funfair rides featuring zorb water balls, bumper cars, cup'n' saucer rides to name but a few.
  • sheep racing!
  • Lots of fun games including a tug of war!

And if doing all this leaves you a bit hungry, don’t worry, there will be plenty of food and drink to suit all tastes, as well as an open air pub… and much more besides.

lottery cheque friends of firs farm

Toni Guiver, chair of the Friends of Firs Farm, (centre) with members and the Big Lottery cheque

The Friends have already obtained sponsorship for the Community Hub from local businesses, such as Home Care Preferred and Target Tuition, not to mention a cheque for £10,000 from the Big Lottery Fund towards the cost of the festival. But more is needed. 

"Big or small, we have a sponsor package that's just right for you", says Friends' chair Toni Guiver. "Alternatively, why not become a volunteer to take part in organising this wonderful event for your local community? Volunteering will provide you with invaluable experience in organising an event of this magnitude and you will make some friends along the way."

Contact Gail 07983 245994 (Stallholders) or Toni 07956 537 974 for more information..

Sponsor a community cafe with a difference

The flagship project that the Friends have been working towards for some time now is the Firs Farm Community Hub - and they're keen to hear from businesses who can help them by donating time, materials, money or expertise.

firs farm community cafe image

Our vision is to create a welcoming, flexible community space, in keeping with the wetlands, which is aesthetically pleasing and can be used by ALL.

We envisage that it will be constructed from sustainable, reclaimed materials, featuring "living walls", to blend into the habitat.

The Community Hub will be designed as an educational, recreation and social space which can be used by schools and the wider community.

proposed cafe location at Firs FarmProposed location of the Community Hub

We want it to be a special place for special people, catering for children and adults with special needs.

It will incorporate Enfield's first Changing Place Toilets, a dedicated space designed for children with autism, a sensory garden and other facilities that will make a difference to the lives of people with dementia and other life-inhibiting conditions.

proposed internal layout of community hubProposed internal layout

Promises are already starting to come in from all over London, but more business support is still needed.

Your contribution would be permanently recognised in Firs Farm Wetlands.

Download the business sponsorship leaflet

Please contact Toni Guiver
07956 537974

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PGC Webmaster's Avatar
PGC Webmaster posted a reply #3829 15 May 2018 15:58
If you're interested in having a stall at the Firs Farm Wetlands Summer Festival on 14th July all the information you need is at this link:


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broomfield conservatory with scaffoldingBroomfield Conservatory: Still open on Sundays

If you’ve visited Broomfield Conservatory  over the last few months (and if you haven’t, why not?), you may have noticed that the wood in the entrance doors is rotting away and that paintwork is peeling off everywhere.

The state of the Conservatory has been a matter of concern for the Friends of Broomfield Park’s Conservatory Group, who’ve been trying to persuade the Council for many months to get repairs carried out.  To no avail, until recently.

Geraldine Anwar, Secretary of the Conservatory Group, at last has some good news:

“Thanks to help from Councillor Dinah Barry, we’ve been in talks with Keith Milne, Principal Surveyor at Enfield Council.  It has been decided that the Conservatory should undergo a complete refurbishment.  The scaffolding has gone up and work has started to repair or replace the rotten woodwork.  The new paintwork should be better able to withstand the humid conditions in the conservatory.”

The work is expected to take about two months, during which time the Conservatory will be closed on Wednesdays.  Eventually it will have to be closed on Sundays too.

Geraldine says that despite the work some of the special events in the Conservatory will go ahead:  “We hope to keep open on Sundays until 13th May.  This Sunday, 29th April, we will be holding our annual Spring Plant Sale.  We hope to be able to hold our Tomato Plant Sale on 13th May.

spring plant sale in broomfield conservatory

“Please bear with us while this work takes place.  Once it is completed we will be revising our plant collection. We look forward to reopening our resplendent Conservatory sometime in mid-June.”

So get along to the Conservatory while you can.  It’s looking as gorgeous as ever inside, and the fruit on the banana plant are getting bigger.


The Conservatory in Broomfield Park (Friends of Broomfield Park website)

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bug hotel in broomfield community orchard destroyed by arson 1There have been further acts of vandalism and arson in Broomfield Park, culminating in the destruction of a "bug hotel" that had been created by children.

bug hotel in broomfield orchardThe burning out of the bug hotel in Broomfield Community Orchard follows an earlier incident, in which bags of waste material were set on fire.  The fire was so fierce that the interior of a metal shed next to the bags was charred.

The orchard was targeted by vandals in January, when eight fruit trees were destroyed.  There has also been vandalism affecting the remembrance garden, Greenery cafe and Broomfield Conservatory.

David March, leader of the Friends of Broomfield Park's orchard group, says that together with a team of volunteers he will be planting replacement trees.  He's also planning to create a new bug hotel in the spring.

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John Worsley's Avatar
John Worsley posted a reply #3785 11 Apr 2018 07:58
The Orchard is regularly used by youths to enjoy smoking cannabis (out of sight but you can smell it for many metres all around), so I'm not surprised. Perhaps if the gate was made less easy to climb over it may be a good start? Any other points of access that need to be blocked off?