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Ruskin Park Shelter Restored

A park shelter in Lambeth's Ruskin Park which had fallen into disrepair has been restored and will soon be reopened to the public. Final preparations for the reopening of the Portico Shelter include replacing most of the surrounding tarmac with grass and wild flowers.

Shelter with 18th century origins in 20th century park

The Grade II listed shelter is made up of material salvaged from one of eight 18th century houses which used to face Denmark Hill. These grand houses were demolished, and their grounds incorporated into the new park which opened in 1907.

Years of decline led to the Portico Shelter being added to the Heritage at Risk Register in 2005. It had become almost a ruin: overgrown with wisteria, and boarded up to prevent vandalism.

Ruskin Park and shelter, black and white photo taken in 1912.
Ruskin Park and shelter in 1912 © Historic England

Repairs to the shelter give new lease of life

A partnership between Historic England, Lambeth Council, Heritage of London Trust as well as Friends of Ruskin Park has enabled the shelter's restoration.

A grant of £87,000 from Historic England has gone towards extensive works including brickwork repairs and repointing, new lime render, repairs to the roof, doors, floor and windows, extensive joinery repairs and redecoration.

Now that the work's nearly complete, it's our aim to remove the Portico Shelter from the Heritage at Risk Register. We're looking forward to seeing it once again enjoyed by everybody visiting Ruskin Park.

The Heritage at Risk Register

Thirty-two entries have been removed from the Heritage at Risk Register in London this past year, like the shelter. These successes bring to life the history of each site, as well as the stories of those who have worked tirelessly to rescue them.

To keep up to date with progress at Ruskin Park and other Heritage at Risk projects, follow us on Twitter @HE_LondonAdvice.

Restoration work in progress at the Portico Shelter in Ruskin Park, Lambeth
The restoration of the Portico Shelter at Ruskin Park is nearly complete. Final preparations for its reopening will include replacing the tarmac surrounding the shelter with grass and wild flowers. © Historic England
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