PRESS RELEASE - OCT 26 2018
Major funding boost for ‘Chiswick Oasis’ project – with more still to do
The ‘Chiswick Oasis’ project, which aims to install a ‘living wall’ and landscaping to an under-used site adjacent to the A4, has received a major boost following an allocation of funding by the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan. The funding allocation of £32,000, announced yesterday, represents nearly half of the project’s fundraising target.
‘Chiswick Oasis’ was launched in September by a group of parents from St. Mary’s and William Hogarth primary schools, which are immediately adjacent to the proposed site of the project at the southern end of Duke Road. The schools’ grounds run alongside the A4, a major six-lane road which carries up to 100,000 motor vehicles every day.
The project involves installation of a “living wall” and other landscaping features along the A4 boundary wall, using plants which have proven benefits in removing pollutants from the air and improving air quality. Once the landscaping improvements are installed, the proposal is for the site to be made available for fairs, markets and community events, outside of school hours. The full proposal can be seen at the project’s website https://www.spacehive.com/chiswickoasis
Deputy Mayor for Planning, Regeneration and Skills, Jules Pipe, said: “All Londoners should feel that they are part of the regeneration of their neighbourhoods and crowdfunding is a really effective way of giving people a stake in their part of the city. The Mayor’s Crowdfund London programme empowers Londoners to bring about positive change in their local area and I would encourage people to support these innovative projects.”
Local resident Andrea Carnevali, who has been spearheading fundraising efforts, said: “This announcement of dedicated funding support from the Mayor of London is a truly exciting development which demonstrates the resonance of this project among the local community. We have been overwhelmed by the support shown by local parents, residents and businesses, by our local MP Ruth Cadbury and both Chiswick and Turnham Green councillors. Clearly the Mayor has been impressed too. However we remain £37,000 short of our fundraising target so there is still some way to go.”
Miss Harte, Headteacher at St Mary’s, said “We have been strong supporters of the ‘Chiswick Oasis’ from the outset and the entire school community, including our governing body, has been firmly behind it. Many of the children at the school have been learning about air pollution and air quality issues as part of the curriculum, so the project has educational as well as health benefits. We very much hope that the project can become a reality over the coming months. It represents a huge opportunity both for our children and the community as a whole.”
The Mayor’s funding allocation will only be released if the project is fully funded by 14 December, leaving the project only 7 weeks to raise the remaining £37,000.
Mr Carnevali added: “It’s absolutely crucial that we can raise the donations needed to realise this project and timing is very tight. In the weeks ahead, we will be appealing to the broader community in Chiswick, including the businesses large and small that form part of that community. It’s a daunting challenge but we have already achieved more than we thought possible two months ago. Children’s health and environmental improvements are too important to ignore, and we have hundreds of local families who are massively behind this project and want to see it succeed.”