The Peckham Coal Line urban park
The Peckham Coal Line will connect the communities of Queens Road and Rye Lane so they benefit from commercial and cultural growth happening locally.
The 900m-long route will run on disused coal sidings alongside the railway line through the heart of Peckham. It will complement the urban setting and frame views across London, passing through beautiful Victorian brick viaducts before dropping down to a little-used nature reserve.
It will bridge the gap in a wider network of cycling and walking greenways between Brixton and the Thames.
The Coal Line is also a way of connecting people, whether that be traders benefitting from greater numbers of visitors, or creating and building on networks of local community groups.
Peckham has a heritage of grassroots activism, in influencing planning projects and turning disused spaces into cultural destinations. We see the Coal Line as part of this tradition.
What we’ll do:
- Commission a full feasibility study to tell us how the Coal Line will be built, planning issues involved & build costs
- Engaging the community – residents, businesses, schools and commuters – with further events and workshops
- Run events that allow people to discover the Coal Line’s history, context and potential.
- Continue the momentum to ensure that the idea is realised by the community, for the community
Why it’s a great idea:
The Coal Line will transform walking and cycling connections around Peckham, changing the lives of residents and businesses by bridging busy roads and creating a more direct link between two high streets.
It will turn disused space into a source of civic pride that brings benefits to health, culture and business and celebrates Peckham’s industrial past.
By bringing people together around the idea, we hope it will act as a catalyst for further social projects that may only be indirectly linked to the Coal Line itself – connecting schools with residents, artists with community groups, businesses with local authorities and all combinations in between.
It will also be something to be enjoyed in and of itself, a place that’s free to use in which to amble, rest, cycle and play above the streets.
We’ve had an enthusiastic response from everyone we’ve spoken to. We now just need your help and support to take this idea to the next level and to make it happen.
How we’ll get it done:
- We will commission a professional landscape architect who can engage the landowners and develop a full feasibility study
- Host and run targeted community workshops and events to encourage participation of those we haven’t yet reached
- We will test and experiment with community generated ideas and options for the route
- This phase is vital for us to develop the case for key decision makers and funders to progress and realise the project
- The next stage will be seeking capital funding to get it built e.g social finance, further crowdfunding or sponsorship
Since the project’s launch there has been an amazing response from the public with over 500 people attending our initial events, interest from local, national and international press and much social media buzz.
We have the support of Southwark Council and our local MP, Harriet Harman. It fits neatly into plans for the regeneration of Peckham’s town center and biodiversity, health and wellbeing and sustainability activities. While Network Rail acknowledge the potential transformative effect it will have on its assets in the area. Organisations such as Peckham Vision, Southwark Living Streets and Sustrans have all been instrumental in helping the project get to this stage.
This enthusiasm has lifted us to our first fundraising stage where we are asking you to be part of this and help us to carry the Peckham Coal Line to the next level. It’s our ambition to have the names of each supporter on a brick used to create the Coal Line, until that’s possible we’ll pop your name on our website.