Giant Slides, Zip Wires, Command Powered Scooters and a Multi-faith Portable Mobile Worship House – the essential winning ideas announced for ‘Future Wimbledonians’ children’s Ideas competition
Love Wimbledon surprised the two winners of the Future Wimbledonians Ideas competition by announcing their wins in their school assemblies. The extraordinary ideas and creativity that the winners demonstrated bowled over the judges, many who are professionals in architecture and the built environment.
The competition, sponsored by Lauristons, was an ideas competition that put the future of Wimbledon Town Centre into the hands of our younger generation. Molly McEvoy from The Priory C of E School won Wahaca vouchers and Julia Rehn from Holy Trinity won Chimichanga vouchers. Both were joint winners, winning £500 each for their schools.
Nearly 150 entries were received from around the borough with dynamic, fun and enticing ideas. The seven expert judges were Marcus Beale from The Civic Forum, Asif Malik from The Wimbledon Society, Gary Elliott from Elliott Wood Engineers, Leigh Terrafranca Planning officer for WEHRA, Dickie Wilkinson designer, Paul McGarry Head of Future Merton and Sarah Hopgood from Lauristons Estate Agents.
Pupils in Merton were given the opportunity to voice their ideas and aspirations for the future of Wimbledon Town Centre. ‘How might you travel to Wimbledon, what sort of buildings, businesses or jobs would you like to see in the town centre?’ were questions posed in the new schools competition launched by Love Wimbledon, the Wimbledon Business Improvement District, and Future Merton, Merton Council’s regeneration team.
The competition aimed to get children in Merton to inspire the Future Wimbledon debate, about how Wimbledon Town centre could evolve and prosper over the next fifteen years and beyond.
Helen Clark Bell, Love Wimbledon’s BID manager commented ‘We had an outstanding standard of entries, especially from primary schools across Merton. From bins that come to you to pick up your waste, some magnificent slides and water chutes and lots more greenery. We hope to use some of the ideas in the future when we get ready for Cross Rail 2.’
The winning ideas will be part of an exhibition in Wimbledon town centre outside Morrisons later on this month, alongside those submitted in the Future Wimbledon competition by professional architects and designers.
Julia Rehn from Holy Trinity picks up her prize form Wimbledon BID Manager Helen Clark Bell
Julia Rehn’s Winning Entry with slides, zip cars on wires, jet packs and lots more
Molly McEvoys Winning Entry with mobile multi-faith worship house, ‘shape street’, command powered scooters and a green park
The judging panel
The judges commented:
Asif Malik, Chair, the Wimbledon Society
‘I was greatly impressed by the variety and breadth of ideas that in our minds would not occur. It’s good to see the fresh thinking coming out and the bubbling of ideas.’
Gary Elliot, Partner, Elliott Wood
‘It is great to see that children of all ages have mastered the key issues within Wimbledon. They have picked up on sustainability and they have picked up on fun, but the idea of having water within the centre of Wimbledon is clearly a message that came through all of these entries.
Paul McGarry, Future Merton
‘I think it is really interesting to see a child’s perspective of the environment in the town centre and how some of the ideas reflected those that came out of the main competition. The overall message is that it is a good place – so lets have some fun with it.’
Marcus Beale, Director, Marcus Beale Architects
‘I think it reminds us that all places are potentially playable spaces and can all be a kind of place where your imagination can transform it. I think it is very interesting to see those entries that actually evoke a sense of place or something that actually feels different from what we’ve got. If some of this talent we have seen here gets properly nurtured we will be OK for architecture in fifteen, twenty years.‘
Dickie Wilkinson, Designer
‘Some really fun ideas which I think, if they come true, would make Wimbledon a fabulous place to be.’
Sarah Hopgood, Marketing Manager, Lauristons
‘Highly impressed by the standard of the entries. Really creative, colourful ideas and it is nice also to see the concerns that affect the local young people. I think we are in safe hands!’
Leigh Terrafranca, Planning Officer for WEHRA (Wimbledon East Hillside Residents Association) and Winner of Creative Community Award for Future Wimbledon
‘Fascinating view from across the entries. The awareness and the importance placed on transport particularly the buses and toilets were interesting. Also the Polka children’s theatre where arts and drama are the beginnings of culture for these people – I think it has proved to me the cultural importance in our town. The other consistent theme is the lack of water, the dryness of the town centre for the kids who are desperate for waterslides, pools, ice skating which are seasonal things.’