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Rainham projects: Rainham Station/Viking Way Passage by What If Projects

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Rainham Station forecourt has received a facelift and, since January, has provided a welcoming space for train passengers, which strengthens links to the village and the rich landscapes of Rainham Marshes and Thames Chase

While acting as a masking device for station equipment, the new black timber screen forms a defined forecourt space between the street and the station building, providing a ramp, seating, shelter and secure bike parking. It also creates a backdrop for new, bold wayfinding graphics.

As part of the project, the environment along Ferry Lane and Celtic Farm Road was improved to complement the new library square and to create a connection to Rainham Hall’s garden, including new footway finishes, a woodland meadow, greening of verges, street trees and a foraging strip of fruit bushes.

What If Projects, working with young people from the Royals Youth Centre, formulated a brief for Viking Way Pasage: a pocket park that brings together the community; a place that provides opportunities for sitting, play and to spend time; a space for events and activities linked with the Royals and the wider community; and a place connected to the village and the marshes with new planting, greenery and ‘softer’ finishes.

The existing space, with its Railing Hall installation by Mark Pimlott has been adjusted, with a small budget, to create greener areas with more trees, planting, benches and a stage.

A perimeter fence has been replaced by a timber screen with integrated seating that provides a surface for interpretive and placemaking text referring to the species planted in the square.

Gareth Morris, director, What If Projects

Project data

Rainham Station forecourt
Date commenced
February 2013
Date completed January 2015
Cost £345,000
Location Rainham Station

Project data

Viking Way Passage
Date commenced
March 2014
Due for completion July 2015
Cost £21,000
Location Viking Way


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