Meanwhile Gardens (Kensington & Chelsea)
Meanwhile Gardens was set up as community garden in 1976 on former derelict land along the Grand Union Canal. Sculptor Jamie McCullough approached Westminster City Council, within whose boundaries the site then was, for permission to turn it into a park. Temporary permission was granted, which led to the garden's name. Supported by volunteers and a dedicated staff team, the gardens now have various landscapes, including a wooded area and wildlife garden, a quiet scented courtyard and a skate bowl. The Playhut was built to provide a safe, stimulating play and learning environment. Beyond Golborne Road the path meanders along the Grand Union Canal.
- Site location:
- Golborne Road/Kensal Road/Elkstone Road
- W10 5NT
- What 3 Words:
- Type of site:
- Public Gardens, Community Garden
- Kensington & Chelsea
- Open to public?
- Opening times:
- unrestricted. The Play Hut Mon-Fri 9.30am-6pm
Took part in Open Garden Squares Weekend in 2008.
- Special conditions:
- Play Hut, plant sales, skate bowl
- Public transport:
- Tube: Westbourne Park (Metropolitan). Bus: 23, 28, 52, 70, 295
- Research updated:
- Last minor changes:
Please check with the site owner or manager for latest news. http://www.mgca.f2s.com
Full Site Description
Meanwhile Gardens was set up as community garden along the Grand Union Canal in c.1976 when derelict wasteland and canalside terraces were being cleared. Local sculptor Jamie McCullough approached Westminster City Council, within whose boundaries the site then was (now following boundary changes it is within RB Kensington & Chelsea) for permission to turn it into a park. Temporary permission was granted, which led to the name that was given to the garden: Meanwhile Gardens. Supported by volunteers and a dedicated staff team, the Gardens have continued to thrive and the 4 acres of derelict wasteland are an oasis in a densely populated part of North Kensington. There are various landscapes, including a recently re-landscaped wooded area and wildlife garden with bridge, path, pond and seating, the work undertaken by Planet Earth in 2000 working closely with the local community. At one end of the garden a scented courtyard has been laid out as an area for quiet contemplation and at the other end is a popular skate bowl.
The Playhut was built to provide a safe, stimulating play and learning environment, a service that helps to break down the isolation often experienced by carers of young children. There are opportunities for volunteering and educational schemes, and youth offenders carry out their reparation orders under gardeners’ supervision. The Gardens also participate in the Wildlife Garden Project run by Kensington & Chelsea Mind, working with adults who have experienced mental health difficulties, and using horticultural training and social enterprise to help with recovery and social integration.
Beyond Golborne Road the path meanders along the Grand Union Canal (q.v.) with grassy areas. In November 2007 Meanwhile Gardens has won a People's Millions lottery fund grant of £80,000 for its Building Biodiversity Project to provide educational activities, training and involvement opportunities.
Charlotte Hare, 'Landscape London, a guide to recent gardens, parks and urban spaces', ellipsis, 2001; Meanwhile Gardens website: http://www.mgca.f2s.com
Further Information (Planning and Conservation)
- Grid ref:
- TQ246820 (524700,182070)
- Size in hectares:
- Site ownership:
- Meanwhile Gardens Community Association
- Site management:
- Meanwhile Gardens Community Association
- Listed structures:
- On National Heritage List for England (NHLE), Parks & Gardens:
- Registered common or village green on Commons Registration Act 1965:
- Protected under London Squares Preservation Act 1931:
Local Authority Data
The information below is taken from the relevant Local Authority's planning legislation, which was correct at the time of research but may have been amended in the interim. Please check with the Local Authority for latest planning information.
- On Local List:
- In Conservation Area:
- Tree Preservation Order:
- Nature Conservation Area:
- Yes - Local Importance
- Green Belt:
- Metropolitan Open Land:
- Special Policy Area:
- Other LA designation:
Meanwhile Gardens - Photo: Justina Burnett
Date taken: 08/06/08 00:00
Click a photo to enlarge.
Please note the Inventory and its content are provided for your general information only and are subject to change. It is your responsibility to check the accuracy.