Riverside Gardens Initial Designs

Riverside Gardens are getting a refresh as part of the funding secured from the Mayor of London’s Good Growth Fund, by London Borough of Bexley’s Greater Erith team.

The initial designs, by the landscape architect, Erect Architecture, are based on feedback from the public following consultation events held since the project began in Spring 2019.

The designs that we need your feedback on include an upper promenade area with different kinds of seating, lower a tree lined boulevard, a larger lawn area, as well as suggestions on how the play area might look.

Survey now closed


Thank you to everyone who took part and shared their views in the online survey.  The survey is now closed and we will be reviewing the responses and sharing the feedback gathered with the architects in the next stage of the project.

If you missed the survey but would still like to share your views on the designs you can email the Regeneration team at erith@bexley.gov.uk.

This won’t be your final chance to have an input into the designs follow us on twitter @GreaterErith or sign up to our regular Erith e-newsletters keep up to date with the project.


Below you can see the initial designs with information about all of the features. Later on the page, we have recapped the themes and priorities from the first stage of engagement and how the initial design tries to achieve these.

Riverside Gardens Initial Design by Erect Architecture

The below images show the current design for the Riverside Gardens that we want your views on.

The numbered features are explained below the diagram:

Initial design with number labels


  1. Play area
  2. Upper Promenade
    1. Climbing wall
    2. Steps and lounging steps to river walk
  3. Central lawn
  4. Lower promenade
    1. Rain garden
  5. Entrances
    1. New ramp

1. Play area

The play area is located in the West Street end of the gardens. The design of the play area has been inspired by the old flour mill and railway wharf. Ideas for the play area include climbable equipment and play features such as balancing beams.

There are places for parents and carers to sit and watch their children. The playground boundary is a planted sunken bed with an low hedge and gate towards the High Street.

2. Upper promenade

The Upper promenade leads along the flood defence wall. It offers views over the river, different kinds of seating and some outdoor fitness equipment (2c). There are a number of new connections the Thames walkway including a climbing wall (2a), stairs over the flood wall, lounging steps (2b) and a gently graded walkway in the west (5a).

3. Central lawns

A larger, generous lawn area lies at the heart of the gardens. This is a multi-functional space for informal games, socialising and picnicking and can be used for events.

4. Lower tree-lined boulevard

A tree-lined pathway along the southern edge entices passers-by to wander through the Gardens. Planted rain gardens (4a) provide some screening from the traffic and can be crossed using one of a number of small and large bridges. Rain gardens manage rainwater runoff from hard surfaces (in this case, Erith High Street) by directing the rainwater into the planted area using gullies, channels and gradients. They help reduce surface water flooding which is an issue in this area. The plants are low maintenance and wildlife friendly.

5. Entrances to the Gardens

The design improves the entrances to the Gardens, making them larger and more accessible. The proposal is to remove the existing ramp and instead create a gentle slope at the western end of the Gardens (5a) to improve the views from Walnut Tree Road and make this important entrance to the Gardens more welcoming and attractive.


The four themes

The four main themes that local people said the designs for the Gardens should address during our consultation are:

  • Connect to the River
  • Celebrate Erith’s rich heritage
  • Provide new opportunities for play
  • Create a destination

Find out more about how the initial designs incorporate these themes.

More on Riverside Gardens