Aerial view of Twickenham Jubilee Gardens from Twickenham Riverside Trust

Twickenham Riverside Trust accepts outcome of inquiry into Richmond Council’s proposal to develop riverside

The Twickenham Riverside Trust has announced it has accepted the outcome of a Public Inquiry regarding Richmond Council’s proposal to develop Twickenham’s riverside.

The proposal includes plans to remove the car park on The Embankment between Water Lane and Wharf Lane and redevelop Twickenham’s Diamond Jubilee Gardens, which the Twickenham Riverside Trust was granted a 125-year lease on a notable portion of in 2014.

While the Trust supported the removal of the car park, the proposed redevelopment of the gardens led to a planning row which culminated in the council applying for a Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) to enable it to complete the plans.

A Public Inquiry was then held in June this year about that CPO, which the Inspector confirmed last month. The Trust could challenge that decision in the High Court but has decided against it.

Trust chair Mark Brownrigg said: “The Trust wishes the council well in carrying forward its project. 

“We intend now to press on with other practical actions under our charitable objectives, including bringing the community together to continue to preserve, protect and improve the Riverside and its environs into the future and to advance the education of the public in the history and environment of the area.”

The announcement marks the end of three years of effort on the part of Trustees, who did signal their disappointment at what they described as a failure on the part of the Inspector to address many of the core issues raised by the Trust in his report.

The council’s plans will see the site of the Diamond Jubilee Gardens developed into the Wharf Lane building, a five storey, 21-metre-tall building on the riverside.

The garden itself will be relocated as part of the £20million regeneration scheme.

The Trust will turn its focus from the development to a more positive agenda, including the creation of a ‘Friends of Twickenham Riverside’ group where the community can join Trustees to share in the task of safeguarding and caring for the public space on the Riverside.

“We will be continuing in 2024 to provide and encourage events on the riverside, beginning with the celebration of the Lunar New Year in February,” said Brownrigg.

Featured Image Credit: Twickenham Riverside Trust

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