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Garden Bridge Trust launches 'myth busting' campaign

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Promoters of the proposed Garden Bridge across the River Thames have launched a PR campaign to ‘bust myths’ surrounding the Thomas Heatherwick- designed proposals

The Garden Bridge Trust published the ‘fact v fiction’ checklist on its website, shortly after the publication of a highly critical article which appeared in the Independent newspaper.

And on Friday evening, project supporter Joanna Lumley gave an interview to the Evening Standard, in which she claimed ‘because we didn’t hit each myth with a mallet, some have taken root’.

The actress said that rather than spoiling sightlines of St. Paul’s Cathedral, the link between South Bank with the Temple Station would create ‘the most unbelievable new views of St. Paul’s which will be very lovely’.

On Tuesday, Independent columnist Jane Merrick slammed the bridge, saying it was dangerously close to becoming ‘a vast waste of taxpayers’ money on an ill-conceived project with dubious public benefit’.

And by Thursday, the trust had published a list of ‘fictions’ about the bridge. Without naming Merrick, it directly addressed a number of points made in her article.

The Trust said that the bridge would offer people the chance to get involved in gardening and horticulture, provide employment and business opportunities, and improve pedestrian routes.

It said that the bridge would be free, and there would be no ticketing system.

However, it did admit that the bridge would be shut between midnight and six in the morning, and for 12 days a year to hold fundraising and ‘community’ events.

In addition, it said that the £175 million quoted as the cost of the bridge includes VAT, land acquisition and professional fees.

In June, the High Court will hear a challenge to the decision of London Borough of Lambeth to grant planning permission for the bridge.

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Readers' comments (3)

  • Merrick is absolutely right in criticising this silly vanity project, which so clearly symbolises what happens when privilege, power and patronage get out of hand.

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  • I apologise for getting Jane Merrick's name wrong (no edit facility) and add that Transport for London want to invest public money in a new Thames crossing closed to cyclists?
    Really? - after the tragedy last week that so clearly demonstrated the need for safer cycling routes in London, and destroyed the life of someone who really did know what good design is all about?.

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  • Industry Professional

    Nothing said about maintenance costs and who will pay them?

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