Fingers crossed for Sydney Gardens.

Friends and suppporters of Sydney Gardens – one of Bath’s most historic city parks – are hoping it will be two-times lucky as they formally submit their bid for HLF funding to secure and improve what is the remnants of one of Britain’s best remaining Georgian pleasure gardens.

Sydney Gardens.

The Sydney Gardens Parks for People Project have already successfully bid for £270,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund to spend on developing a plan for its future. Now the ’round-two’ bid for £2.7 million has gone in.

Sydney Gardens  Community Ranger, Sue Palmer told Bath Newseum:

“The HLF Parks for People Application was submitted yesterday (15th August).
It has been a huge amount of work.  I attach a photo of all the folders we submitted!
We will hear the outcome in January 2019.”

HLF submission Round 2
A lot of detailed work has been put into what is a whole pile of thick folders submitted to HLF for consideration.

Meanwhile B&NERS has formally submitted its own proposals – for improvements to the park – to the Council’s Planning Committee. However – even if the proposals sail through – everything is dependent on lottery money to pay for development work.

Here’s how the application appears on the list:

Application Link: Sydney Gardens, Sydney Place, Bathwick, Bath,

Works at Sydney Gardens Public Park including erection of cafe kiosk with accessible toilets following demolition of existing Bowls Pavilion. Restoration of Listed Ladies and Gents toilets to be used for park related uses and events. Relocation of listed ladies toilets. Conservation works to the grade 2 listed Loggia and Minervas Temple. Conversion of Bothy and modern toilets to community / park related activity use. Consolidation of the lower half of the derelict structure in the current depot area and associated site wide repairs and landscape works.

Application reference: 18/03451/REG03 received on 02/08/2018

Planning Portal reference: PP-07160069

Application status: Pending Consideration

What is left of the main Georgian drive through the former pleasure gardens.

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If successful, money will be used to restore historic buildings, invest in landscaping works, renovate the play area and create new gardens, alongside a programme of events and activities.

Sydney Gardens Project Manager, Keith Rowe, pictured with just a small part of the official application.

The project will celebrate the fascinating history of the gardens, with its Cosmorama, Labyrinth, Merlins Swing, concerts, public breakfasts, galas and illuminations.

Bath & North East Somerset Council is bidding for the lottery money to invest in Sydney Gardens, first opened in 1795 and a favourite spot of Jane Austen.