Greenwich Council has been accused of "woefully neglecting" a once "great" Eltham park which now has broken gates, graffiti and a dried-up boating lake.
Neighbours backing on to Queenscroft Park remember when children played in its now empty paddling pool and the space acted as a community hub - attracting up to 5,000 merrymakers for the former Eltham Fayre.
Residents and Leader of Greenwich Conservatives Councillor Spencer Drury are now calling on the council to restore the historic park, whose land used to be one of three deer parks belonging to Eltham Palace, to its former glory.
Ron Strong and Alan Tizzard co-founded the Eltham Fayre, which ran for around 10 years from the late 80s and drew huge crowds to the park for everything from music, dancing, and go-karting, to military displays by members of Woolwich’s Royal Artillery.
Mr Strong, 71, who lives in Queenscroft Road, said: "It needs an awful lot doing to it because it’s been allowed to run down lately.
"It feels a little bit annoying when you know what it used to be. I can see the park from my front window, so it isn’t the nicest view.
"It was a really great park and it still can be."
The father-of-two, who has eight grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren, says it would not require much investment to restore the park fully.
The former engineer suggested building a skate park over the former boating lake, or turning the area into a raised garden bed for residents to enjoy, if it is not possible to refill the lake.
Coun Drury added: "This park has the potential to be a beautiful space and should be the heart of the community this summer, but sadly is no longer fit for purpose.
“I hope Labour now act on Queenscroft Park because they are letting down the local
Greenwich Council response
A Greenwich Council spokesman said: “Greenwich Council welcomes all feedback about our local parks and we will ensure that the unsightly graffiti and the damage to the fence is investigated and made good as soon as possible.
"We do undertake regular inspections and we will ensure that this damage is rectified.
“We agree with residents who want to secure long term and sustainable improvements and make the park a more welcoming location."
They encouraged residents to help form a Queenscroft Park Friends group to protect its interests. A public meeting will take place this autumn.
He added: “Greenwich Council is proud to currently hold 15 Green Flag Parks Awards, and with the support and active involvement from residents, we hope one day to see Queenscroft Park added to that list.”
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