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King George's Field Greenwich
   
Summary: The land was formerly common land, which was acquired from the War Department in 1952 and provided as public open space with funding from King George's Fields Foundation, which had been set up in 1936 as a living memorial to the late King. It comprises an area of open grass with a number of mature oak trees in the centre. At the south east corner is a brick structure with seating niche, either side of which are brick piers with the plaques recording the support of King George's Fields Foundation.
Previous / Other name: Little Eltham Common
Site location: Well Hall Road/Broad Walk
Postcode: SE9 6TZ > Google Map
Type of site: Public Open Land
Date(s): 1952
Designer(s):
Listed structures:
Borough: Greenwich
Site ownership: RB Greenwich (registered under the Land Registration Acts 1925 and 1936)
Site management: Parks and Open Spaces Department
Open to public? Yes
Opening times: unrestricted
Special conditions:
Facilities:
Events:
Public transport: Rail: Eltham then bus. Bus: 161, 122.
The information shown above was correct at the time of the last update 01/11/2007
Please check with the site owner or manager for latest news. www.royalgreenwich.gov.uk

Fuller information:

The land was formerly common land of Little Eltham Common or Kidbrooke Common. The 4.94 acre site was acquired from the War Department in 1952 and provided as public open space by the GLC with a grant of funding of £1,000 from King George's Fields Foundation. The King George’s Fields Foundation was established on 3 November 1936 in order to promote the establishment of playing fields in memory of the late King George. It was considered that the King would have approved of such a living memorial, which would benefit the 'individual well-being and the general welfare of the nation', and young people in particular, by providing them with the environment and opportunity for open air exercise. The Trust Deed of the Foundation defined a playing field as 'any open space used for the purpose of outdoor games, sports and pastimes.' Local authorities were able to apply to the Foundation, whose trustee was the National Playing Fields Association, for a grant to provide these new facilities for public recreation. Each new playing field was to be known as King George's Field and was generally provided with heraldic panels that would distinguish it as such. It was a condition of the grant that the tenure of the site was sufficiently secure so that it would provide a meaningful legacy to the king's memory; the land must have been acquired only for the purpose of public recreation. The design of the entrance and the ground's layout had to be approved by the Foundation, which was to receive an annual report for the first five years from the acceptance of the offer. 471 playing fields across the UK were funded and following the demise of the scheme in 1965, their protection has been undertaken by the Fields in Trust. The largest King George's Field is Enfield Playing Fields (q.v.), some 128 acres, and the smallest is in the City of London, King George's Field in Portsoken Street (q.v.).

King George's Field in Greenwich comprises an area of open grass with a number of mature oak trees in the centre. At the south east corner, near the junction of Well Hall Road is a brick structure with seating niche, either side of which are brick piers that have the plaques recording King George's Fields Foundation. Adjacent is the drive leading to Greenwich Cemetery (q.v.), with shrubs planted either side.

Sources consulted:

'History of the King George's Fields Foundation' and other information on www.fieldsintrust.org
Grid ref: TQ427764
Size in hectares: 2.02
   
On EH National Register : No
EH grade:
Site on EH Heritage at Risk list:
Registered common or village green
on Commons Registration Act 1965:
No
Protected under London Squares
Preservation Act 1931:
No
 
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: No
Green Belt: No
Metropolitan Open Land: No
Special Policy Area: Yes - Area of Special Character of Metropolitan Importance
Other LA designation: Green Chain
   

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