Over the Easter weekend I had the pleasure of visiting a beautiful oasis set next door to London’s financial district. Mudchute Park and Farm was not known to me until recently and when the Hubby told me about it, I couldn’t believe such an area existed literally opposite Canary Wharf. And yet, here I was surrounded by 32 acres of park and farm land, complete with a working stables and delightful selection of animals.
Literally a five minute stroll from Mudchute DLR station and suddenly all the London-ness disappeared and bird song was thick in the air. It was a grey day but that did not deter us or the other families that were out and about on the farm.
The Mudchute Association is a registered charity that devote their time and energy into preserving and looking after the land which has evolved over thirty years. Boasting impressive views over London, this wonderful hands on experience for both adults and children is open to members of the public free of charge and is fundamental in providing services for the local community.
Mudchute Park and Farm was originally a derelict piece of land that had come into existence during the last century through the dredging of Millwall Dock. Decades on, this area of land was unused and forgotten about, claimed only by the natural fauna and flora. Fast forward to 1974 and suddenly the land was earmarked for development that would result in the loss of an area of natural beauty.
Due to the success of a people’s campaign, plans were halted and it became known as the ‘People’s Park’ for the area. The Mudchute Association was formed in 1977, with trees and animals being introduced by hard working volunteers. Moving into the future, Mudchute Park and Farm has been an important tool for education, with neighbouring schools being encouraged to use the area. Mudchute continues to build on its reputation for providing a variety of educational and recreational activities.
I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to Mudchute Park and Farm, which was pleasantly enhanced by a visit to the ‘Kitchen’. A cosy café with a decent selection of hot and cold food and choice of beverages. But if you fancied more of a home made feel then it was good to see plenty of picnic tables and areas where families could sit and enjoy the surroundings. It was also nice to see children interacting with the animals by feeding them with suitable foods which could be purchased from the shop for a small price.
For somewhere I had only heard of recently I thoroughly recommend a visit. The work that the Mudchute Association has put into the area is truly admirable and there is clearly more positive development on the horizon.