There will be guided walks kicking off at 2pm and 4pm near the main entrance gates on Stoke Newington High Street. Abney’s John Baldock will show you just some of the many treasures of the Park and explain how its future management is being considered by the Council. Arboriculturist and ecologist Russell Miller will show you some of the species that live on the site and explain the effects of the proposed Wilmer Pace development on the park’s rich ecology. Nick Perry of the Hackney Society and Bernard Bourdillon of the Trust will explain how the five storeys of supermarket and housing will negatively impact the built heritage and seclusion of the Cemetery and Stoke Newington Conservation Area.Between 3-4pm we’ll have music and entertainment on a stage near the Stoke Newington High Street entrance.
Throughout the afternoon there will be a host of family-friendly activities including: art workshops, craft demonstrations, a forest school and theatre. Fancy dress is most welcome, so why not dust off the great costumes we saw at the Bug Parade and Zombie March – or surprise us with something totally new.
It should be a fun and informative afternoon for everyone. We’ll have information stalls and a coffee shop (with a proportion of proceeds to the Stokey Local Community Fund) running throughout.
This is an opportunity to find out about the work the Trust does managing Abney Park for us all as a woodland cemetery, a nature reserve, heritage asset and public park. The Abney Park User Group (APUG) represents the interests of all the park’s users and will also be there, helping organise the day and telling people about the sorts of vital volunteer activities they organise in the Park. We’ll also have a Stokey Local stall to give a focus to the fundraising, and offering the chance to donate what you can afford on the day (especially if you have not had a chance before) or pledge a donation by bank transfer.
We’re specifically targeting this event at those who don’t know about the campaign or how the development will affect Abney; and to highlight the hidden treasures of Abney and the many activities and events that go in the Park for the benefit of Londoners far and wide.
Our friends and supporters at St Paul’s Church, on the High St and Evering Rd, are having a grand re-opening of the West Hackney Recreation Ground and Churchyard from noon till 3:30 on the same day. They’ll have a picnic (bring some food to share or buy some at the adjacent Farmers’ Market), music and free workshops. So why not make a day of it, and visit the market and West Rec before coming to Abney for our event? For more details, visit stpaulswesthackney.org.
Aside from the fun on the day, there is a serious point to all of this. Donations and any profits from the day are being donated directly to the Stokey Local Community Fund. The fund’s objective is to back the two Judicial Reviews and legal appeals that Nick Perry is pursuing with Stokey Local’s support. These challenge the granting of two identical planning permissions by Hackney Council which are due to be heard in at the Royal Courts of Justice on 14-16 October 2014. Over 400 people have already donated to the fund and raised an impressive £16,800. We still need to raise up to another £4,000 to cover possible further legal and professional costs. Our expert barristers are kindly working at no cost to the campaign, but if we lose we’ll have to pay our opponents’ legal costs (currently capped at £15,000) plus our own solicitors fee and incidental costs.
We are also looking for volunteers to help the day run smoothly, both before and on Saturday 6th September itself. There is a range of things you can do to get involved and help support the day:
If you would like to help, please e-mail you name and contact number to firstname.lastname@example.org
, together with your address for leaflets, posters and flyers (so we can put you in touch with the right area co-ordinator for your ward).We look forward to seeing you on the day and hope you have a great time with your friends, family and neighbours. And all in a good cause!