Pocket park, Rainham, Kent, UK
A new Pocket Park in Rainham, Kent, where the community is at the heart of everything
Pocket Park in Kent for the Oast Community Centre in Rainham, Kent. The Oast House in Rainham, alongside the railway station was The Wakeley brothers’ largest building. It was built, using their own bricks and tiles, in the late 1800s. There were two kilns for drying and packing the hops, and there was plenty of storage for the harvested fruit and grain. This rich history is the inspiration for this park.
Communities are at the heart of everything, where they live, work and play. Parks and green spaces are a hub of many communities. However, there are many neglected and unloved sites across the UK which create a detrimental effect on the local people and environment. This Pocket Park helps shape local identity, helps people overcome social isolation and creates a sense of belonging.
The Pocket Parks scheme delivered 198 projects across England in 2018. This improved new green space will support people with long-term benefits to the community’s health and wellbeing.
This design focuses on a floral sensory garden, a vegetable garden, new abundant borders, espaliered trees and a mini orchard to tie the community to the many orchards found throughout Kent. New seating, covered areas and a place to meet will allow visitors to take part in looking after the Pocket Park, while being fully accessible to all. This new park will also attract pollinators and other beneficial insects and birds and mammals, creating a green corridor with the local nature reserve, the playing fields and the amenity greens. Native British plants and wildflowers will give the park a sense of place and space.
Before this new park, Rainham had a deficit of 6.76 hectares of parks and gardens.
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