BROMLEY Council says it’s committed to pursuing improvements to Crystal Palace Park despite seeing a multimillion-pound lottery grant turned down.
Earlier this year the authority saw £5 million worth of funding refused by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) due to an acknowledgement that far more cash may be coming in from elsewhere.
Chinese investors the ZhongRong Group is said to be readying a £500m proposal to see a modern-day Crystal Palace built on the site as well as other renovations.
The council says it’s disappointed its application was unsuccessful but remains hopeful for the future. Leader Stephen Carr said: “We are absolutely committed to securing much-needed improvements at Crystal Palace Park and this latest news is clearly disappointing.
“Perhaps understandably, with the potential full restoration of the park a real possibility, the application was not successful but it would have been wrong not to pursue this option and apply for the grant.”
Sue Bowers, head of HLF London, recognised the potential for developments but said its money perhaps wasn’t needed due to ZhongRong Group’s involvement.
“Whilst this project has good potential, news of proposed plans of a multi-million pound private investment into rebuilding the Crystal Palace, including the full restoration of the park, meant that at this time our trustees felt this application was a lower priority for Lottery investment,” she said.
In October last year the ZhongRong Group announced its intentions to restore the park and see the famous palace rebuilt.
The council has reported it’s now entered into an “exclusivity agreement” until February 2015, which allows time to forge detailed plans for the project.
A drop-in session on The Crystal Palace Park Project is set for Saturday February 1 between 11am and 5pm.
The team behind the development is set to give a short presentation to update those interested before question and answer slots at 11.30am, 1.30pm and 3.30pm.
It’s going to be held at Anerley Town Hall on Anerley Road, London. For more information visit www.thelondoncrystalpalace.com or phone 020 8676 5666