May 19 2013 Latest news:
by Luke Jacobs
Thursday, June 7, 2012
A new entertainment and cultural hotspot is to open on former wasteland at the Royal Docks in time for the Olympics.
The London Pleasure Gardens has confirmed its opening weekend will take place on June 30 to July 1.
Organisers have promised a return on the £3.1m loan from Newham Council which made the project possible.
Opening events will include the the BT River of Music, the BLOC music festival, featuring Snoop Dogg and Orbital, and the Paradise Gardens Festival, which will feature the likes of Roots Manuva, Alabama 3 and Jerry Dammers from the Specials.
The Pleasure Gardens will have room to fit 35,000 people. The idea was based on the pleasure gardens created in the Georgian era.
Deborah Armstrong, creative director, said: “This is a huge year for London, and it’s a great chance to showcase the wealth of cultural talent this country has to offer.
“Our goal at LPG is to create an incredible space to champion cutting edge art and culture in the community and beyond, just as our predecessors in the field of guerrilla entertainment did when they built London’s last set of pleasure gardens.”
The site, operated for three years, will contain the purpose-built hub and a 1,000 person capacity dome, a floating cocktail lounge, a pop-up hotel and restaurant, and a nature reserve.
Visitors will also be able to enjoy a pyrotechnic display, live bands, and street art and performance during the opening weekend.
Organisers have also promised to turn the site into a “paradise” during the Olympics.
As part of the deal under which LPG secured the loan, jobs have been promised to residents using the council’s workplace scheme.
Newham Mayor Sir Robin Wales, said: “This is an exciting, unique opportunity creating a new, vibrant London entertainment venue in the heart of Newham.
“I am confident this scheme will be a fantastic success, offering attractions for local residents, the rest of London and tourists visiting the capital from further afield.
“Not only will it provide a spectacular venue for residents right on their doorstep, the project will also give jobs to Newham residents as well as generate a valuable revenue stream which will be invested back into the community.”