The fight for Bromley’s Italian Garden

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Bromley Council plans to sell the unique Italian Garden, an open space on the south side of Queen’s Gardens, so as to build restaurants there.

We are backing our member, the Friends of Bromley Parks and Gardens, in opposing the scheme.

Says our South London representative, Mark Green: ‘If the land is sold and restaurants and cafés built here the land will cease to be open space available for the public to enjoy. The development would be a private, not public, amenity.

‘We consider the development here is contrary to Bromley’s own policy in the Bromley Town Area Action Plan which says that: “New cafés and restaurants will be permitted around the edge of the garden provided that development does not result in the loss of any green space”. While the site is paved rather than green, it is nevertheless public open space, and to interpret the policy as permitting such development here would contradict the overall thrust of local and national planning policy.’

The Italian Garden was added to Queen’s Gardens about 20 years ago to compensate for the loss of another part of Queen’s Gardens in the redevelopment of Bromley town centre. Continues Mark: ‘Allowing the disposal of this site now would be contrary to the spirit and intention of the original land swap’.

‘Furthermore, the site forms part of a conservation area. The proposed development is contrary to the requirements of development in a conservation area, namely that it should preserve or enhance the area.’

We are also objecting to the planning application for development of the site.

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