One of the biggest challenges for this project was how to prevent dog use and anti-social behaviour occurring without fencing the space from the riverside and public users. The residents wanted a space that was playful, interesting and usable but without fi xed play units or furniture. The space needed context but above all it needed character.

The design was based around water with flowing and curving lines referencing the Thames. A bit of fun was incorporated with “turtle mounds” for informal play. A new 3.5 x 3.5m rain garden at 1.5m deep can cater for 18m3 of water with paving blockwork relaid to subtle gradients toward the rain garden. A small boardwalk over the rain garden allows people to interact further. De-paving under trees allowed further water permeation and opportunity for tree growth. There is further scope for a ‘Phase 2’ project where down pipes from adjacent buildings may be diverted into the high capacity rain garden.

A semi-permeable barrier using vertical chamfered top FSC sleepers set one third in haunching were designed as a feature instead of a physical barrier. The 100mm spacings between the sleepers were narrow enough to prevent even the smallest dogs from fitting their head through but wide enough to still make the space feel connected with the Thames path. The chamfered facia to the sleeper tops accentuated the qualities of the curving perimeter nodding to the flow of water in the adjacent Thames.

Approximate Map Location


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