NCRA NewsMail

11 January 2018

Footscray Meadows - Parkrun

Thanks to Suzy and Ian Higgs for their following comment on the Parkrun even proposed to take place on Saturday mornings as published in our NewsMail, dated 28 November 2017.

We would like to oppose the Parkrun event in FootsCray Meadows.

The Footscray meadows is a place of biodiversity with the benefit of a nature reserve, it is not a park . The fact that it's called a Parkrun suggests it should take place in a park.

The meadows are already open to the public i.e.. The River Cray Walk.. This run would cause a problem to dog walkers, where they would need to avoid the area.

We have lived in the area 16 years and we accept that change is inevitable, however, we do not consider the change of use in this part of the meadows as appropriate. It is not a running track and during the summer when the meadow is in full bloom it is a natural diverse wildlife area and having runners continually exercising on the same route will have an impact.

It is highly likely that there is going to be at times the mix of dog walkers and runners where each feel that have a right to enjoy the meadows. Currently the meadows can be seen to have joggers who frequently take exercise, we do not see the need for Parkrun to propose the health benefits on such a small area with a regular pattern in the meadows potentially damaging the flora and fauna.

In the past there have been various attempts to hold events in the meadows, we do not see that the meadows (as a unique space) continually needs to be seen as the only public space where such events are held considering the numerous parks throughout the London borough of Bexley together with the schools which have playing fields.

For these reasons we cannot accept the argument that the meadows need to be opened up to the wider community when we believe that they already are, it is that we do not see that it needs to cater for runners anymore than currently exists.