Tag Archives: HLF

Canons £4.7 million Lottery bid a success

We’re delighted The Canons has been awarded over £4 million by the Lottery as part of a £5 million plus restoration project.

Securing this funding has been a major effort from the three community organisations who have donated hundreds of volunteer hours over the last four years to achieve it. These are Mitcham Cricket Green Community & Heritage, Friends of the Canons and Mitcham Society.

Merton Council is the applicant as it owns the land and buildings and expert consultants have provided new insights and research.

The project will deliver on one of the key objectives of our Cricket Green Charter.

The running track, dovecote, obelisk, Bellamy’s Copse and pond will all benefit. The Canons house will be restored. Most of the house will be let as offices but the basement will become a community space and the large room on the ground floor will be available for hire.

The disused toilets between Canons House and Madeira Hall will be demolished. There will be a new café built onto Madeira Hall looking into the east lawn where the dovecote is.

The car park immediately outside the entrance to the leisure centre will become a plaza, including a new children’s play area replacing the one in front of Park Place. A new entrance will be opened up at the obelisk. There will also be investment in managing the area better for wildlife.

And that’s not all!

There will be a programme of community events and activities, an archaeological dig and educational projects. These will provide multiple ways in which local people can get involved.

This is a massive investment in our part of the Conservation Area. It reflects the importance of Mitcham’s heritage and open spaces. This one off funding will give The Canons a real boost and reinvesting the income it generates from new activities will secure its long term future.

Now the grant has been secured, the real work begins! A planning application for the works is expected in September. Watch out for more news and let us know if you want to get involved.

£4 million lottery funded project a game changer for Cricket Green

News of a successful £4m lottery funded project for The Canons and its grounds should be a game changer for Cricket Green.

If the full funding can be secured then it will see major new investment to open up the house, restore the historic running track, improve wildlife habitats and support an array of community-led projects to involve more people and tell the story of this special part of Mitcham. We have already teamed up with Friends of the Canons and the Mitcham Society to draft much of the original bid and are gearing up now to bring it to life.

Success cannot be taken for granted. There are some worrying aspects to the project. Plans for a new paved track cutting across the open space in front of Park Place from the playground to Cold Blows will blight this much loved open space. It will also sterilise much of the historic Mitcham Athletic Club grounds from being used for sport and informal recreation. Such short sightedness must not be allowed.

The project will also test the mettle of Merton councillors and officers. The Council will have to step back and support the local community to take the lead from behind the scenes.

With the right support we could see a flowering of community initiatives as a wider range of people are inspired to get more involved by the exciting prospect of what is now in store. Do get in touch if you want to be part of it – email us at info@mitchamcricketgreen.org.uk

The ultimate test of this one off investment will be the legacy it leaves. This will be measured as much by the involvement of local people in caring for Cricket Green’s future as by the physical changes to The Canons and its grounds or the number of new visitors to the area. We are rolling up our sleeves for the excitement to come.