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London's first floating park has just been approved

Alexandra Sims

Forget the Garden Bridge, a new oasis of green space is coming to London, and hopefully without all the hoo-hah. Plans for the city's first floating public park have been given the go-ahead by Westminster council. Yes, this spring Londoners will be able to get their green space fix while bobbing on top of the Grand Union Canal in Paddington Basin. The 730-square-metre ‘floating pocket park’, is set to open this spring and will feature open lawns, Tibetan cherry trees, densely planted raised borders, communal seating, and a series of decked platforms and walkways over the water (aka perfect pooh sticks potential).

Garden designer Tony Woods, who is leading the project, has divided the park – constructed from interlocking pontoons made from recycled materials – into three sections including an events and installations venue complete with pergola and a 'no humans' zone for wildfowl. There'll also be canal boat mooring for boat-based traders selling food and drinks and it'll be open all year round until dusk, with flora to complement all seasons including stem colour in autumn, scented winter flowers and spring bulbs. This will also be a park fit for the twenty-first century, with wifi access throughout, programmable water and a light maze – fancy! 

The 'London Floating Pocket Park' is part of the development of Merchant Square by property company European Land and will be opened in May as part of the Chelsea Fringe. 

Go and explore the great outdoors at London's best hidden gardens and green spaces.

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