Future looks bright for Bowie’s bandstand as funding group “would welcome a new application”

PUBLISHED: 11:46 19 January 2016 | UPDATED: 16:24 19 January 2016

The bandstand at the recreation ground

The bandstand at the recreation ground


Heritage Lottery Fund said it would consider a second application

An Edwardian bandstand which once hosted a performance from a young David Bowie could receive more than £300,000 for refurbishments, as the borough looks to set up a lasting memorial to the iconic singer.

Last week a Bromley councillor said the council would do “everything it could” to make the bandstand a “fitting and enduring tribute” to Bowie, who immortalised his performance at the bandstand in the song ‘Memory of a Free Festival’.

His performance came as Woodstock roared on across the pond, weeks after the release of his iconic sixties tune ‘Space Oddity’ which recently reached number three in the iTunes download chart following news of his death.

His performance at the bandstand was the culmination of Bowie’s time with the Beckenham Arts Lab, a creative movement run by local artists and performers who would often perform at The Three Tuns pub.

But applications for £302,1000 worth of funding to repair the bandstand in Croydon Road Recreation Ground last year were rejected by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

A spokesperson from HFL said: “We know this must be incredibly disappointing news. Our Committee members were impressed by the commitment of the Friends in their fundraising activities, and recognised the importance of the bandstand, both as a historic part of Bromley, and in local people’s memories of David Bowie.

“However, the committee had to take decisions on more projects than the available budget would cover, and it was felt it would have been beneficial for the project to highlight the heritage importance of the bandstand more strongly, and to maximise the opportunities for skills training and horticulture apprenticeships.

“We will be talking to the Landscape Group and the Friends of Croydon Road Rec about how they could strengthen their proposals, and would welcome a new application from this project.”

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