The Nene Park: Your Community Greenspace project, funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund is an exciting project for Nene Park that includes improvements to the infrastructure in the Park, new events and community projects, that will respond to the growth of the city and region.  We are currently in the Development Stage, throughout which we have developed proposals to submit in our 2nd stage application in early 2021.  We will find out if we have been successful in securing the funding in summer 2021.

The project has three key themes:

  • Empower and engage our communities to help conserve the natural heritage of Nene Park.
  • Build bridges with the multi-cultural communities of Peterborough to make Ferry Meadows an inclusive community hub.
  • Improve physical and mental health and wellbeing through nurturing connections with nature and the outdoors.

You can find out more about the whole project on the Your Community Greenspace project page.

As part of the project we are proposing the replacement and improvement of some of the key structures and buildings in the park.  The purpose of this is to ensure the park is resilient and welcoming to increasing numbers of visitors with a variety of interests and needs.  The information below gives a brief insight into where these proposals have reached so far.  We are keen to receive feedback and will shortly be submitting them for planning permission. 

Click here to complete our survey 

Replacing Pontoon Bridge

The proposed new bridge is a simple arch embellished by high quality craftsmanship.

Pontoon Bridge is one of the early parts of the Park’s infrastructure built in 1986.  The bridge is currently constructed of timber, steel and concrete.  The bridge has required increasing levels of maintenance over recent years as it approaches the end of its serviceable life.  The original opening mechanism, which allowed the two halves of the bridge to open separately, has long been fixed closed to minimise further movement and limit the damage this causes.

The new design has been created to be both robust and resilient in construction whilst establishing a new icon in the park using skilled craftspeople and a nature-inspired design.  The proposals create a wider walkway to enable users to pass each other comfortably and to stop to look over the water without blocking the way for others passing.  The bridge construction is proposed to be lacquered steel, giving a high quality solid finish, ensuring it will last for many years to come.  The railings of the bridge evolve into gateways of trees at either end of the bridge.  The design uses metal rather than wood as given the large amounts of use and proximity to water, this will give a more resilient structure with a much longer lifespan.

Although the floating quality of the current bridge is a beloved feature for many, others find this uncomfortable and disorientating to cross.  The nature of floating pontoons also creates a maintenance issue with movement of other components of the bridge and the life of the pontoons themselves.  We have considered other ways to keep an opening bridge, however the costs of this outweigh the benefits when other solutions are available.

Improving Lynch Lake Community Hub

Following initial conversion work, with support from EU funder LEADER, completed in 2020, we are now proposing to build upon this by expanding the outdoor usable space to create a flexible community space for workshops, teaching and performance.  The design proposes a functional indoor/outdoor space and includes habitat walls, large decking area and a flexible canopy with retractable rain/shade covers.  This design predominately uses timber with intelligent engineered timbers for the framework.

Creating a Real Welcome

The main arrival area at Ferry Meadows is a visitor’s first impression of the Park and where people gather for activities, events, to use facilities and to plan their next steps into the park.  These proposals plan to re-landscape this area and improve the toilets with the provision of enhanced and upgraded facilities alongside a new extension which will include a Changing Places facility

We will secure additional funding for the Changing Places facility which is a larger accessible changing and toilet facility including a hoist, height adjustable changing bench as well as space for carers. This will be a vital facility for many disabled people enabling them and their families to enjoy the park.  These improvements will also be accompanied by improvements to the toilets at Ferry Meadow’s Café planned soon.

A new canopy area will also be created gathering together the car park machines, information displays and creating a focal point connecting to the toilets.  The landscaping in the area will be further improved ensuring a clear arrival point for visitors with a realigned footpath, taking visitors from the welcome area more directly to the Visitor Centre. A new central feature tree and increased seating both in the centre and around the edge of the area will create a greater sense of place.  The new landscaping will include a new water garden fed by rainwater from the surrounding buildings, increased biodiversity rich planting and sculptural features such as hand crafted timber seating, habitat features and arch covered walkway.  The proposals also include resurfacing, removing the patch work of different paving and tarmacs to give a more consistent appearance and feel to the area.  We will also include additional cycle parking within this area.  These designs are centred around the use of timber in both its raw and engineered formats making the most of its versatility, embedded carbon and natural aesthetic.

We would welcome your feedback on these proposals by submitting comments via our survey.

Click here to complete our survey

Additional images:

Replacing Pontoon Bridge 

Plan view of the proposed bridge design                                                                   


Cross section of the proposed bridge design


Lynch Lake Community Hub

Plan view of the proposed design                                                                    


Side elevations of the proposed design


  Impression of inside and outside the Community Hub                                                              


Creating a real welcome

Artist impressions of the welcome area




Plan view of the proposed toilet block improvements