On Thursday, 6 June 2013, a celebration was held at Herne Hill Velodrome (HHV) to thank all those involved on completion of Phase 2 of its renovation, and to launch fundraising for Phase 3. A very generous Southwark Olympic Legacy Project award of £400k has funded Phase 2 – a 250m track for junior and less able cyclists and a multi use games area within the main track, plus main track lighting, to get more kids and adults into cycling and a healthier lifestyle.
Phase 1- renovation and resurfacing of the main track – was achieved in August 2011 by British Cycling, after The Dulwich Estate granted it a 15-year lease on the track and infill and a temporary 3-year lease on the rest of the site. Extension of this short-term lease is conditional on Estate approval of building plans, funding and a business plan to run the whole site.
Phase 3 comprises replacement of the derelict grandstand and other buildings and finding the funds to do this. HHV Trust has one year left to raise £3m for the Pavilion Building with bike storage, which fits The Estate’s specification. Without this, and a long lease, it will be impossible to provide the pavilion, changing facilities, cafe, gym, etc., which HHV desperately needs, and generate the necessary income to run the site.
Hillary Peachey, Chair of HHV Trust, explained how important it is to realise that the future of HHV is not yet secure and donations of all sizes are required. Although the Trust has indication of possible grants, it still has to raise at least half the £3m. It was most encouraging to have supportive speeches from Tessa Jowell, British Cycling’s President, Southwark Council’s Leader and The Dulwich Estate Chair and see so many local councillors, cyclists, friends of HHV, cycling organisations, local, and national businesses and the Phase 2 contractors, at the event. Hopefully, they were all enchanted by this very special place and everyone will want to help, by providing the financial support, which is so urgently needed for Phase 3.
Charmian Hornsby 13/6/2013