Here are some of the issues that we discuss with Coram’s Fields. We welcome your comments.
Unfortunately, over the past few years, there have been issues with general maintenance, which goes up and down.
In 2019, following on CFUG’s campaign with Coram’s certain issues such as upkeep of the sandpit, and grass re-turfing on the East side have been completed.
Toilets have been refurbished too, for both kids and adults. CFUG has been instrumental in achieving this, by guiding efficient use of Section 106 Grant.
Displacement Pitch Rental – Coram’s Fields opening hours
Frustratingly, adults are using the pitch when children are still keen to use them. Due to adults using the football pitches at the same time as children, CFUG has found that it has to constantly remind Coram’s Fields management of its Trust Deed obligations to keep the Playground open for children. Furthermore, there are numerous issues of safeguarding problems caused by this.
Displacement rental to a Christmas Corporate Marquee
In recent years, the west lawn of the park has been given over to a large tent for six weeks in the build up to Christmas which is rented out for corporate events. Over the Christmas period, children and parents use of the park was limited: there was no access to the farm animals, the pavilion and paddling pool area where not accessible and general access is limited. We have produced alternatives to corporate hires – such as Christmas market, Christmas theatre, but so far with no reaction from Coram’s Fields.
Diesel Generators for the Marquee
The Marquee is powered by two large diesel generators that, this year, were close to the basketball court and the “Flying fox”. Many users raised concerns about the diesel fumes in the park. CFUG asked Coram’s Fields to monitor the pollution caused by the generators.
The measurements have been completed in 2018. These confirm pollution levels at close or above those in the middle of Euston Road, one of the busiest roads in central London.
With Camden Council Coram’s Fields are now financing electric cabling to power the marquees. The event went ahead regardless in 2019. Duty of care and safety of children ought to be imperative for all Trustees at Coram’s.
Over recent years Coram’s Fields suffered greatly in terms of investment in the maintenance of the existing features, equipment and infrastructure. Signs of this are visible around the park. There have been a few small improvements lately, but there is a long way to go – we have been and will be chasing the management on these issues.
Animal area has been significantly scaled down in the last years. The duck pond has been filled, the sheep are gone, chicken coop is empty. The large canary house used to have hundreds of happy chipping birds. Are there any animals left? It is not clear the direction in which the animal zone will go, and Coram’s Fields are not providing any clarity.
In December 2016 Coram’s Fields received a Section 106 grant (S106_Allocation_Nov16) of £37.5 thousand, from the Camden Council to develop an “State-of-the-art multi-purpose sports arena”.
CFUG followed this development with interest. In our meetings with Coram’s Fields, we provided contacts with Basketball England, who in turn provided a list of recommended contractors who regularly engage in similar projects.
Eventually, Coram’s Fields decided to go for a new tarmac surface area. The main part of the basketball resurfacing was completed towards the end of 2017.
Significant savings compared to the initial “painting” plan have been used to refurbish both children’s and adult’s toilets.