Elephant Park tree re-use
2016 - ongoing
LANTERN partnered with development giant Lendlease on a ground- breaking project to re-purpose trees removed during the regeneration of Elephant Park in central London.
Tree removal on the site highlighted the challenges faced by developers felling trees as part of major regeneration. Community stakeholders were keen that the trees were not lost to the community, so Lendlease approached Lantern and Timber Strategies to develop and deliver a creative tree re-use scheme as part of the development’s overall green infrastructure plan.
Lantern designed a project which would see the felled trees milled, transformed and reinstated on site as indoor and outdoor furniture.
Due to growing conditions, urban trees present a unique challenge when sawn as they can contain metal or other objects which could damage equipment or the wood itself.
After milling, drying and kilning the timber was transported to the furniture makers who submitted designs to Lendlease.
With designs approved, the furniture makers produced the pieces, which are
currently on site in temporary positions, until their permanent homes are completed.
With main trunk sections of the trees milled, Lantern and Lendlease worked together to identify alternative uses for the remainder of the wood to ensure nothing was wasted.
Community based organisations welcomed the wood to use in their activities; The Conservation Volunteers were able to use a large amount of the bigger branch material at two local wildlife sites, at Stave Hill ecology park the wood has been made into steps, clamber logs, an activity trail, edging and benches, whilst at Galleywall nature reserve the wood provided materials to build a terraced permaculture bank.
Rebeka Clark, site manager at Stave Hill commented:
“The acquisition of the logs made a significant difference to the project – thank you. The larger logs in particular have made great features, and really made the project stand out”
Other organisations to benefit from the wood included Art in the Park, where the wood was used for spoon carving workshops, Crossbones burial site where the wood was used for seating and habitat piles and The Spinney children’s centre which has used it for creating habitat piles and outdoor wildlife areas within schools and children’s play facilities locally.
The Elephant Park project has demonstrated the creative possibilities of using local timber, and ensured that trees removed as part of this regeneration scheme continue to be enjoyed by the community.
"The Lantern team were great to work with. They responded to the project brief with sensitivity and a creative and well thought out plan. Delivery of the scheme was excellent; the project ran smoothly, on time and within budget despite considerable logistical challenges."
Lendlease Nov 2016.