Lee Valley Regional Park

Park Development Framework

Return to homepage

Walking and cycling

Where are we now?

The quality of visitor facilities is key to the success of the Park as a destination. The Regional Park’s visitor facilities will be in competition with a wide range of facilities on offer across the whole of London, Essex and Hertfordshire.


The current quality and range of provision is however varied. A number of existing facilities provide a comprehensive range of services for Park users. Other facilities offer a more limited range of services, and in some cases are focused primarily on specific activities and users e.g. sports facilities.


It is also important to take into consideration the range of other facilities and attractions within the Park that, although not focused on providing services for the Park visitor/user, can nonetheless be used and enjoyed as part of a visit e.g. pubs, café, visitor attractions. There are approximately 50 pubs located either within the Park boundary (or close to it) plus a variety of cafes, restaurants and toilets within towns and villages close to the Park (e.g. Ware, Stanstead Abbotts, Roydon, Broxbourne and Waltham Abbey). Busy roads, railway lines and other infrastructure can create barriers to movement, and routes from these centres to the Park are not always attractive, or easy to find. Promoting the relationship between specific facilities such as a local pub or village and the Regional Park will expand the visitor offer and provide additional facilities and choice for the visitor. Success will be dependent on partnership working and joint promotion.

What do we want to achieve?

To build on the current range of visitor facilities in the Park, in order to provide the essential comforts people want and expect when they visit.


To provide venues and supporting facilities for the wide range of activities and events that the Park hosts.


To ensure all new facilities are designed to sustainable standards and incorporate both energy and water efficiency measures. Existing facilities will be retrofitted at an appropriate stage.


We believe there are four key elements to this future network:-

1. Visitor Facilities

  • We want to develop a network of visitor facilities that offer a core level of service to include: toilets, shelter, food and drink, staff presence, Park information, indoor and outdoor seating areas, secure play areas and other place specific features and activities.
  • We want these facilities to be located within or close to sites of interest within the Park and, where possible, to be readily accessible to public transport.
  • Where possible we want these facilities to support some, or all, of the wider range of services offered within the Park, including events, education and volunteering (e.g. flexible meeting space, changing facilities, showers, secure storage etc).

2. Secondary Visitor Infrastructure

  • Secondary infrastructure includes features and facilities such as signage, furniture, interpretation, playable space, view points, recreational opportunities and anything else that supports visitors’ enjoyment of the Park.
  • We want to ensure that secondary visitor infrastructure is appropriately located throughout the Park
  • This could include temporary or movable structures that might form a short-term visitor focus within the Park, possibly as part of an event, exhibition and seasonal feature.

3. Facilities nearby the Park

  • These include pubs, cafes, retail outlets and other visitor attractions that are located near by the Park. These facilities will form an important part of the overall visitor facility network.
  • Park based information, signage, paths and entrances will help visitors get to, and enjoy, these facilities.

4. Broadening the visitor offer of specific purpose facilities

  • A number of existing built facilities within the Park currently focus on specific activities, or operate for a specific purpose. The needs of users of these facilities are well catered for, although in many instances the facilities provide limited services to general Park visitors.
  • We want to ensure any new facilities will provide a multi functional role, offering services for both specific uses and general Park users.
  • We also want, where possible, to improve existing special purpose facilities to better accommodate the needs of general Park users.
    • How will we deliver?

      On our estate

      We will

      • Further enhance existing visitor facilities where possible to ensure provision of the identified core range of services, particularly at:
        • Lee Valley Farms/Fishers Green (River Lee Country Park)
        • Gunpowder Park
        • Myddelton House
        • WaterWorks Nature Reserve and Golf Centre
      • Ensure proposed new visitor facilities provide the identified core range of services, namely:
        • South River Lee Country Park – Lee Valley White Water Centre
      • Work with partners to provide new visitor facilities (as a component part of new recreation/leisure developments) at:
        • Broxbourne (former Leisure Pool site);
        • Lee Valley Leisure Complex (at Picketts Lock)
        • East India Dock Basin
        • Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park vistor hub
      • Undertake a long term investment programme to replace and further develop the secondary visitor infrastructure. This will follow the comprehensive design proposals highlighted in the Branding Strategy.
      • Broaden the visitor offer of existing specific purpose facilities within the Park where possible.

      Working with others

      We will

      • Enhance existing visitor facilities owned and operated by others to ensure they provide as many of the identified core services for general Park users as possible. They should also form part of a coordinated and complementary whole Park visitor network, particularly:
        • RSPB Rye Meads
        • YHA Lee Valley, Cheshunt and Herts Young Mariners Base
        • Royal Gunpowder Mills
        • Markfield Beam Engine Museum
        • Three Mills Green and House Mill
      • Develop new visitor facilities to provide the full range of identified core services for general Park users, particularly at:
        • Walthamstow Reservoirs
        • Hackney Marshes
        • Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park
        • Lea River Park

      Working with others

      We will

      • Enhance existing visitor facilities owned and operated by others to ensure they provide as many of the identified core services for general Park users as possible. They should also form part of a coordinated and complementary whole Park visitor network, particularly:
        • RSPB Rye Meads
        • YHA Lee Valley, Cheshunt and Herts Young Mariners Base
        • Royal Gunpowder Mills
        • Markfield Beam Engine Museum
        • Three Mills Green and House Mill
      • Develop new visitor facilities to provide the full range of identified core services for general Park users, particularly at:
        • Walthamstow Reservoirs
        • Hackney Marshes
        • Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park
        • Lea River Park

Visitor facilities

flash here
Link to home page