Many moons ago, when the world was young, we wrote about the imminent transformation of that mostly featureless park next to the London Eye. SEVEN YEARS LATER and the work is finally done.
By lucky coincidence, the park has been known as Jubilee Gardens since the Queen's Silver Jubilee in 1977. The arboreal nip and tuck is complete just in time for her Diamond milestone this weekend.
The overhaul introduces meandering pathways that resemble a droughty version of the Diana Memorial Fountain in Hyde Park. The development also includes mature trees, flower beds and a children's play area. You might also recall that they've fitted 'Jubiloo' toilets, which are state-of-the art (they've got a Facebook page).
The total bill is £5 million, most of which comes from private sources (neighbours Shell and the EDF London Eye), although £1.5 million comes from the Mayor's office. The expense might be justified. This is likely to become the most-visited park in Britain, if not the world, given the tourist footfall along the South Bank.
The re-developed gardens were designed by Dutch landscape architects West 8 and constructed by Frosts Landscape Construction Ltd.