Thursday, April 21, 2016

Meet The Lenox Project and Sayes Court Garden this Saturday 23rd April

The Lenox Project (aka Build The Lenox) and Sayes Court Garden are the community projects which fought long and hard to gain a place on Convoys Wharf, site of the former Deptford Dockyard now owned by multinational conglomerate Hutchison Whampoa who intend to build 3500 luxury flats there.

The Lenox Project, on the other hand, intends to build and sail a replica 17th century royal naval ship, create a dockyard museum, and establish a centre of excellence for historic shipbuilding and restoration, creating employment and apprenticeships for young and old in every aspect of the project – from carpentry to the arts, digital design and engineering to sailing the high seas. The original Lenox was built and launched in Deptford Dockyard in 1678 at a time of great scientific discovery. Read more at

Sayes Court Garden want to build on the legacy of John Evelyn, Deptford's famous horticulturalist and diarist whose original Deptford garden, Sayes Court, gave birth to new scientific ideas and cultural changes. With support from the National Trust, they aim to create outdoor and indoor spaces that explore 21st century ideas around sustainability, climate change, health and nature with the idea of the garden as a living laboratory and tool for thought. Read more at (aka


Since Boris Johnson 'called in' and decided on the Convoys Wharf application on 31st March 2014 nothing much has happened on the Convoys Wharf site except an increase in security to prevent travellers gaining occupation. As yet, no detailed building designs have been submitted.

Meanwhile, the two home-grown heritage projects who Boris made a condition of planning as part of the obligatory Section 106 agreement, have been up working up their plans – despite having received hardly a penny of the Section 106 monies paid to Lewisham Council on their behalf to date.

The Lenox Project were first required to undergo an independent feasibility study to determine where on the site they could establish themselves – this was only completed in December 2015, some 18 months later. Unfazed, the project has subsequently published a revised Vision document which focuses on the chosen location – at the north west corner of the site next to Pepys Park, the opposite end to where the ship was originally built.

Sayes Court Garden have since been holding schools workshops and working with students from Greenwich University, liaising with architects, planners and designers, and contributing to national and international exhibitions, lectures and discussions.

Both projects hope to bring local people up-to-date with their latest news at Deptford Lounge on Saturday 23rd April, 12.30–3pm. Go and say hello to them!

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