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Chelsea Bridge Shrubbery Westminster

Chelsea Bridge Shrubbery

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This small landscaped area on the east side of Chelsea Bridge between Grosvenor Road and the river was formed soon after the embanking of the river by Sir Joseph Bazalgette in 1869-74. Chelsea Embankment was officially opened in May 1874 by Lieutenant Col Sir James MacNaughton Hogg, Chairman of the Metropolitan Board of Works. A second landscaped area on the west side of the bridge falls within the borough of Kensington and Chelsea. Both are overgrown with trees and shrubbery and largely inaccessible to the public, although a small railed area overlooking the river was reinstated for public enjoyment in 2006.
Previous / Other name: Meadowbank
Site location: Grosvenor Road
Postcode: SW1
Type of site: Private Open Land 
Date(s): 1874
Listed structures:
Borough: Westminster
Site ownership: Grosvenor Waterside Development
Site management: Grosvenor Waterside Development
Open to public? Partially
Opening times: A small area to east of bridge is accessible, remainder only accessible subject to permission from keyholder
Special conditions:
Public transport: Rail: Victoria. Tube: Victoria (Victoria, District, Circle)
The information shown above was correct at the time of the last update 01/06/2010
Please check with the site owner or manager for latest news.

Fuller information:

These small areas of landscaping to the east and west of Chelsea Bridge were created after the Thames was embanked by Sir Joseph Bazalgette in 1874. Embankment of the river was first proposed in 1839 by the Commissioners of Woods and Forests to provide a much-needed new road as well as extra sewerage, but work did not begin until the 1850s along the Pimlico frontage. Lack of funding halted the scheme until 1871 when William Webster was appointed as contractor under the supervision of Bazalgette, Chief Engineer to the Metropolitan Board of Works, which had been set up in 1855. The work was completed as far as Battersea Bridge by 1874. Either side of the bridge is a railed area between the road and riverside that is densely planted with shrubbery and trees, that on the west side of the bridge falls within the borough of Kensington and Chelsea. On the east side a small platform with a single bench was reinstated as an area for public enjoyment in 2006 by St James Group in conjunction with the neighbouring Grosvenor Waterside Development. The planted area that it overlooks, renamed Meadowbank Area (SMI) according to a plaque on the site, remains locked although public access 'may be granted for the purpose of nature conservation study or fishing'.

Sources consulted:

Simon Bradley and Nikolaus Pevsner, 'The Buildings of England London 6: Westminster', (Yale University Press, 2003)
Grid ref: TQ285779
Size in hectares: 0.143
On EH National Register : No
EH grade :
Site on EH Heritage at Risk list:
Registered common or village green
on Commons Registration Act 1965:
Protected under London Squares
Preservation Act 1931:
The information below is taken from the relevant Local Authority's planning legislation, which was correct at the time of research but may have been amended in the interim. Please check with the Local Authority for latest planning information.
On Local List:
In Conservation Area: No
Conservation Area name:
Tree Preservation Order: No
Nature Conservation Area:
Green Belt: No
Metropolitan Open Land: No
Special Policy Area: Yes - Thames Policy Area
Other LA designation:

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