The Swindon heritage action zone

GWR Park, Faringdon Road

Gwr park HAZ image

GWR Park was established in the 1840’s initially as a cricket pitch for GWR employees and then as a formal park in the 1870’s when formal beds and glasshouses were laid out. Since that time the park has played a key role in the sporting and social life of Swindon, hosting many social events such as the annual Children’s Fete which would attract crowds of over 30,000 people.

The Heritage Action Zone funded the production of a Conservation Management Plan for GWR Park by landscape architects Cookson and Tickner over Summer 2021. The plan includes a detailed, illustrated history of the park and sets out the vision or action plan for the next five to ten years. It was informed by extensive consultation with local people and formally endorsed by South Swindon Parish Council in October 2021.

For further information about the history of the park, view the following documents:

Next steps

The Heritage Action Zone has been working closely with South Swindon Parish Council on an Action Plan to deliver some of the recommendations within the Conservation Management Plan. The aim is to improve the park’s facilities and highlight its history. Additional Blossom Together funding has also been awarded by the National Trust. 

Over the Winter of 2022 you will see some changes happening:

  • Formal flowerbeds will be recreated to enhance the man entrance to the park, add interest and create new attractive spaces to dwell in
  • A ‘blossom circle’ of trees on the footprint of the historic bandstand will provide a floral display in the spring and create a new semi-enclosed space to be used for events and performances
  • The seating bays around the perimeter path will be renewed and new ones created including within the new flowerbeds and blossom circle. All existing benches will be replaced with one consistent style of bench (21 in total) to reflect the heritage of the park.
  • The bins, noticeboards and bollards in the park will be replaced
  • A programme of activities will be offered over spring/ Summer 2023 to encourage people to visit and enjoy this lovely green space

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