Report of the Director of Open Spaces.
Members received a report of the Director of Open Spaces detailing the success and learning from the 2019 Hampstead Heath Events Programme and setting out the proposed 2020 Events Programme.
Members were advised that it had been a busy and successful 2019 for events with thanks given to the Officer Events Group for their assistance. Members congratulated the Events Team for their hard work and the successful implementation of the new Events Policy.
A Member (Highgate Society) noted previous discussions regarding the potential for a heritage/history day similar to the Highgate Wood Heritage Day. it was added that the annual conker event could be expanded to incorporate this idea. Officers confirmed that there had historically been a Heritage Day at the Heath and that such an event would require considerable work and planning. Members were invited to follow up with contacts and ideas for a Heritage Day.
A Member (Mansfield Conservation Area Advisory Committee & Neighbourhood Association Committee) felt there was a missed cultural opportunity for a literary event looking at the huge amounts of literature past and present (not just Keats) with a connection to the Heath. This could include appearances and readings from local writers. The Superintendent noted that there was a Keats 200 programme which included live actors, walks, etc, but agreed to talk to Keats House regarding a ticketed fundraiser. A Member agreed to follow up with the Ladies Pond about assisting. The Deputy Chair noted that Queen’s Park hosted an annual literary event which was coordinated by external, commercial organisers.
A Member (Hampstead Rugby Club) suggested expanding “This Girl Can” to bring in walking groups.
In response to a concern raised regarding the popularity of large events and carrying capacity of the Heath (Hampstead Conservation Area Advisory Committee), Members were advised that the Events Policy and Committee oversight guaranteed that the carrying capacity and impact of each event was considered and that balance was ensured. It was agreed balance was essential to diversity and inclusion at the Heath.
A Member queried if there was potential to expand on the recent Southern Cross-Country Championships to develop a European Cross-Country event. Officers confirmed that European Athletics were approached but uptake was poor.
RESOLVED – That:-
· Members of the Hampstead Heath Consultative Committee provide feedback on the proposed 2020 Events Programme (Appendix 2);
· The views of the Hampstead Heath Consultative Committee are conveyed to the Hampstead Heath, Highgate Wood and Queen’s Park Committee at their meeting on 11 March 2020;
· Members of the Hampstead Heath Consultative Committee agree the proposed 2020 Events Programme (Appendix 2).