Hornfair Park BMX track ‘needs investment’, operator admits as work planned

The BMX track opened in 2012 but has fallen into disrepair

Hornfair Park’s BMX track “needs investment” after falling into disrepair just eight years after it opened, its operator GLL admitted to Greenwich councillors last week.

The facility opened in 2012 as an Olympic legacy project, with some local residents initially objecting to the track because of fears it would attract antisocial behaviour.

While it proved to be a popular facility, it was overshadowed five years later by the opening of the skate park in Charlton Park, and has looked increasingly tatty since then.

At a Greenwich Council scrutiny panel last Thursday, Kidbrooke with Hornfair councillor David Stanley told representatives of Greenwich Leisure Limited, which operates the track, that groups were having to move events to Kent because the track was in such a poor state.

“We’ve a lovely BMX track which is now falling into such disrepair we’re unable to use it and we’re having to move events to Kent,” he said.

Gary Starkey, the partnership manager for GLL’s leisure centres, said contractors were about to visit the track to see what work needed doing.

“We absolutely recognise that the track needs some investment and work to be done – as soon as practical, we’ll get that work done,” he told the regeneration scrutiny committee.

Starkey added that GLL was looking into relaunching the track with a promotional event when the work is done. (See 23 and 27 minutes into the video below.)

Charlton councillor Linda Perks questioned how well Charlton Library – which is also operated by GLL – was being promoted (see nine minutes into the video below). “It’s just a small library ticked away in a corner of Charlton House – I just wondered if you could increase marketing of that facility in that area. There’s not much information inside the building or outside that it’s there.”

Paul Drumm, the libraries partnership manager, said the libraries team went to local events and fairs to promote the service, while Tim Hetherington, GLL’s head of leisure and libraries, said the staff worked closely with the Royal Greenwich Heritage Trust – which runs Charlton House – and its events, adding: “Our staff have dressed up as World War I nurses.”


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