Petition launched to stop relocation of Welsh school to park in Wembley

Protesters including Cllr Sam Stopp, fighting plans to put Welsh School in an unused bowling pavilio

Protesters including Cllr Sam Stopp, fighting plans to put Welsh School in an unused bowling pavilion in King Edward V11 Park, Park Lane, Wembley, including swapping its land for sloping land - Credit: Archant

Campaigners for a park in Wembley have launched an online petition against a disused bowling pavilion to be used as a Welsh school.

Brent Council will decide in a meeting next Wednesday whether to relocate the London Welsh School (Ysgol Gymraeg Llundain), in Shakespeare Avenue, Stonebridge to the unused Bowling Pavilion in King Edward VII Park in Park Lane.

Under current proposals submitted to Brent Council, an extra storey will be built to accommodate the independent school’s 30 pupils.

Campaigners for Friends of King Eddie’s Park (FKEP) are petitioning the council to give them the lease to the Bowling Pavilion and accompanying green for residents to preserve as a sports club and use as a community hub.

Denise Cheong, chair of FKEP, said: “We have a fully costed business proposal that we will be submitting to the council. Once the park is used for a school or for any other non park leisure use then the community will never get it back it back. Once it’s taken, we’ll never get it back.”

Bernadette Driscoll, member of FKEP, added: “Parks are for all and should not be the subject of a change of use. The land should remain for recreational use. Brent Council entered into a deed of dedication with Fields in Trust in 2012.

“The deed is registered at the Land Registry and states that King Edward VII Park is held as a “public playing field and recreation ground, inclusive of a bowling club and sports pavilion” in perpetuity.

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“Brent Council needs to honour this pledge to the people of Brent.”

Objections include the use of public space, the increase in parking and congestion, and the destruction of a Monterey Cypress tree and three Yew trees under landscaping proposals.

Objections have also been placed by Wembley Crime Prevention over reports of anti social behaviour in the park and Sport England, who is “aware that local groups have shown an interest in reinstating the bowls club and former pavilion”.

The London Welsh School, the only Welsh speaking school outside of Wales apart from Ysgol yr Hendre in Trelew in Patagonia, Argentina, has been in Brent since 1958 and faces losing its current home through plans to expand Stonebridge Primary School.

A decision on the planning application will be made on March 4

To sign the petition visit here.

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