July 2019 • Vision RCL

Redbridge Museum is set for a major transformation thanks to a grant worth £99,990 from The National Lottery Heritage Fund.

The award will enable the museum based in Redbridge Central Library to revamp its much-loved permanent exhibition dedicated to celebrating local history.

From Ice Age Ilford to suburban Wanstead and Woodford, from historical links with the wider world to the cultural diversity of today’s communities, the new showpiece displays will reveal 200,000 years of Redbridge history.

Under the proposed new offering, visitors will be able to access a greater range of historic objects as well as even more family-friendly interactive displays.

It will also provide a pathway for visitors to take their interest in local history further and explore the archives of the adjacent Redbridge Heritage Centre.

The grant, which was won by Vision Redbridge Culture & Leisure who manages the museum for the council, is in conjunction with a further £60k from other sources to support the project.

The project will involve the local community every step of the way including consultation and co-curation, and will be the platform for creating an accessible and imaginative permanent museum exhibition which is strongly rooted in its diverse local community.

The Leader of Redbridge Council, Cllr Jas Athwal, said:

“I’m delighted that Vision has secured this funding and support from the National Lottery Heritage Fund. These plans will ensure Redbridge Museum continues to be a source of civic pride for local residents, an educational resource for local schools, a space for informal learning by a wide range of community groups and a place of wonder and enjoyment for local families and visitors. I look forward to seeing the developments.”

Stuart Hobley, Area Director for London & South from The National Lottery Heritage Fund said:

“We’re delighted to support Redbridge Museum to work with local people to research and better celebrate the area’s heritage. Thanks to National Lottery players, new permanent displays will explore everything from Ice Age Ilford, to Redbridge’s links to the East India Company, to more recent stories of its diverse local community.”

Public consultation will begin this summer with design work during 2020. The current museum is scheduled to close in autumn 2020 and reopen in spring 2021.

The National Lottery Heritage Fund is the largest dedicated funder of heritage in the UK and distributes National Lottery grants from £3,000 to £5million and over, funding projects that sustain and transform the UK’s heritage.

Nine council parks and open spaces in Redbridge have again been confirmed as some of the best in the world after successfully retaining their coveted Green Flag award.

The esteemed flags will be flying for another year in Claybury Park, Clayhall Park, Elmhurst Gardens, Goodmayes Park, Hainault Forest, Ilford War Memorial, Seven Kings Park, South Park and Valentines Park.

The international award from leading environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy recognises the best parks and green spaces globally.

Council Leader Cllr Jas Athwal said:

“This is fantastic news and I am really pleased that our commitment to and continued investment in providing the very best parks for our residents to enjoy has been recognised once again with this prestigious award.

These flags are a huge honour and a great tribute to the hard work of our parks team at Vision, as well as the volunteers and residents who contribute so much to making our parks places we can all be very proud of.”

This is the latest high-profile recognition for the borough’s parks, with the council recently securing £4.2m from the National Lottery Heritage Fund and £1.2m from London Mayor Sadiq Khan to restore, rejuvenate and enhance Hainault Forest.

The council has also pledged additional investment of £1.6m for new and refurbished play areas in its green spaces and last week unveiled brand new facilities in Ilford’s Loxford Park, the latest to be transformed.

Now in its third decade, the Green Flag is a sign to visitors that the open space boasts the highest possible environmental standards, is beautifully maintained and has excellent facilities.

The nine borough parks raising the Green Flag this year are among a record-breaking 1,970 across the UK to have received the accolade.

Iain Varah, Chief Executive for Vision Redbridge Culture & Leisure that manage the parks on behalf of Redbridge Council said:

“We are absolutely delighted to retain our Green Flag status for all nine parks.

We know how much quality green spaces matter to residents and visitors, and this award celebrates the dedication that goes into maintaining Redbridge parks to such a high standard.”

International Green Flag Award scheme manager Paul Todd added:

“It’s fantastic that we have more Green Flag Awards in the UK than ever before, joined this year by 131 International winners.

Each flag honours the thousands of staff and volunteers who work tirelessly to maintain the high standards demanded by the Green Flag Award. We congratulate each and every winner on their fantastic achievement.”

The summer holidays are almost here and there’s plenty to keep the kids busy right here in Redbridge! Get involved and learn a new sport, pick up useful skills or simply have some fun and make friends! From multi-sports to water sports, there’s something for every child.

We offer a range of leisure and sport activities suitable for 3 to 14 years. Spend the day at Owls Play Centre, get wet on our Water Sport Camp, master the BMX track or take part in one of our many team sports.

Summer holiday courses are taking place across our Redbridge leisure centres, find one near you and book your place before places get filled up!