Raphael Park

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 United Kingdom
  • Nature
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Raphael Park (pronounced "ray-fel") is a public park in Gidea Park, Romford, in the London Borough of Havering, United Kingdom. It is one of a series of parks stretching northwards from the railway line between Romford and Gidea Park. The park is commonly known as Raphael's Park by locals. The southern entrance to Raphael Park is on Main Road, formerly called Hare Street, and the northern entrance is just south of the A12 Eastern Avenue. The western boundary of the park follows the line of Black's Brook, a small stream that is dammed where the park meets Main Road to form a lake 12–20 ft deep. The park itself is part of the parkland that once surrounded Gidea Hall. Raphael Park contains two ancient Pedunculate Oaks recorded by the Woodland Trust. The park is named after Sir Herbert Raphael MP, who gave it to Romford Urban District in 1904.In addition to the lake, which is used for fishing, there are several amenities provided within the park. In the southern part of the park is a bandstand, and then near the end of the lake is a rockery which is used by the Romford Summer Theatre. Beyond this point the park widens to the east, and there are sports pitches (football in winter and cricket in summer) and sunken tennis courts. To the north of the tennis courts is a children's play area. This was remodelled in 2009. Apart from these the park consists of parkland, mature woodland and grassland.
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