We’re back open but things are a little different

*Please check back here for regular updates about Coram’s Fields and our phased reopening*

Over the last two months, we’ve been delighted to be able to provide free parking facilities for NHS staff and families attending Great Ormond Street Hospital. However, we know how important getting our park open is for local families, and following further lifting of restrictions, we are now working through a phased reopening of the park. Our priority now and in the coming weeks is to open up parts of the park, to provide families with essential, safe access to green, open space. See below for further details on the reopening of the park and our plans for reopening our services.

Park, playground and sports facilities

24th June – Park re-opens to the wider public (Wednesday to Sunday only):

On the 24th June, we reopened our doors to the public for the first time since lockdown began. Between the 24th June and the start of the summer holidays, our east lawn, basketball courts and football pitches (subject to demand) will be open to the public as open spaces only from 10am-5pmWednesday to Sunday. We’re committed to getting as much of our park as possible open seven days a week from the start of the summer holidays. In order to do so, for now, our park will remain closed on Mondays and Tuesdays, to enable our staff team to carry out essential safety and maintenance work, to ensure the park is ready to welcome visitors in time for the busy summer period.

15th July – Playgrounds opening:

The government has recently announced that playgrounds are allowed to open from the 4th July however, there are a number of measures that we are required to put in place, to ensure that we can do so in a way that is safe for all of our young visitors. For this reason, we’ll be spending the next week getting our facilities ready for opening and expect to reopen our playgrounds from the 15th July. Once open, they will feel a little different and we will be placing limits on the number of people being able to use them. We ask that all visitors adhere strictly to the guidance on display and respect their fellow users, so that we can keep these invaluable spaces open for local families.

27th July – Extended park opening and playgrounds (7 days a week):

From the 27th July, we’ll be back to opening seven days a week, from 10am-5pm.

Football pitches: (Open as open space but no group sporting activities)

With community sports still being limited to groups of no more than six and the opening of changing room facilities, still prohibited, our football pitches and basketball courts remain closed for any organised sporting activities. For the time being, we are prioritising the provision of open space for families, and our football pitches and basketball courts will only be open to families and children under the age of 16 years for this purpose, so that they can have the opportunity to get some much needed fresh air!

We don’t know at the moment when we’ll be able to open our sports facilities (for structured sporting activities) but we are doing everything that we can to make sure that we are ready to do so, when government guidance allows. We expect restrictions to be lifted at short notice so you may need to wait a few days before you can start using our sports facilities again – please bear with us, we’ll get things up and running as soon as it’s safe to do so.

Please note:

As we open up more parts of our site over the coming weeks, and with strict government restrictions around social distancing still in place, the park will look and feel very different. Initially, we will be limiting access to the park to no more than 300 at a time, with families permitted to stay for up to 1.5hrs only in busy periods. All toilets will be open from the 15th July, but with social distancing measures also in place. Visitors are asked to kindly take all of their litter away with them.

We are working towards the reopening of the Café and expect to be opening our doors again on the 27th July.  Access to the park and sports areas will be restricted based on current government guidelines https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/staying-alert-and-safe-social-distancing/staying-alert-and-safe-social-distancing#meeting-family-and-friends – please check for updates before visiting and to avoid being refused entry.

Nursery

On the 15th June, we were able to open our Nursery doors once again and it was great to see some of the children after such a long period of closure. Over the last three months, our staff have been in constant contact with our parents and children, providing weekly checks ins, virtual story times and even an virtual Easter Egg Hunt. – for full updates, or to enquire about a place, contact our Head of Early Years, Carole Perry – carole@coramsfields.org.uk

Out of School Club

Whilst we haven’t been able to run after school provision during the summer term, we have now received guidance from the government regarding the running of holiday schemes during the summer holidays. Registrations are now open for the scheme, that will run for four weeks from the 2nd-5th week of the holidays. As a regulated play provider, we are working within very similar guidance to that of educational establishments. The scheme will be split up into three bubbles, subject to demand, and priority will be given to those referred through Camden and key workers, but we also expect to have some space for others, who might want to join the scheme. For further details on the scheme and how to book, contact OSC Manager Kate Gardner – kate@coramsfields.org.uk

Youth Programme

Despite not being able to open our Youth Centre over the last three months, our youth work team have been working to ensure that our young people don’t miss out on vital support, through a weekly programme of virtual activities. With our centre unlikely to be able to reopen its doors until September, for now we’ll be taking our support directly to the young people on estates and popular hang outs across the local area. Thanks to the Youth Music Trust, our youth workers will be kitted out with an outreach bike and trailer full of music recording equipment, enabling young people to produce and edit music and videos without having to come to the centre. For further details, contact Youth Programme Manager Daniel Jourdan daniel@coramsfields.org.uk

Sports Programme

With strict guidelines still in place for community sports, we think it’s going to be a little while until we’re able to start our sports programme up again. To make sure that our young people are not missing out, our sports team will be teaming up with our Youth Work team, to provide virtual sporting activities between now and the summer holidays. From July, our sports team will also be working alongside our youth team to deliver a programme of local outreach, providing one to one and small group sessions for young people. For further details, contact Sports Development Officer Meghann McKeever on meghann@coramsfields.org.uk or our Head of Youth and Sports, Naz Deen on naz@coramsfields.org.uk

To keep up to date with our plans, please sign up to our mailing list here – We will also be updating this page and our TwitterFacebook and Instagram pages with regular updates.

Thanks to all those that have supported us!

As many of you will know, the closure of Coram’s Fields resulted in a huge loss of income for the charity, and left us facing an uncertain future. Two months ago, we launched an Emergency Appeal to support our efforts to keep Coram’s Fields open and to ensure that the vital support that we provide for local families, continues into the future.

The response from the community over the last two months has been nothing short of phenomenal, with over 750 individuals donating and taking on challenges to help us reach our £50,000 fundraising target. However, as we begin to reopen the park, we simply can’t afford to be complacent. To those that have already supported us, thank you so much!

For those that haven’t yet done so, we still really need your support – please consider making a donation or taking on a fundraising challenge to help our efforts: https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/SaveCoramsFields

Many thanks for your patience and support during this time and we look forward to welcoming you back in the weeks ahead.

The team at Coram’s Fields