Two years in the making but all the better for that is a detailed plan to repair and refurbish the abandoned pavilion in Tudor Park, in Tudor Road, New Barnet, so that it can be reopened for public use.


Barnet Council has been inviting expressions of interest from organisations or businesses which might want to redevelop the pavilion to provide a community space and a cafe to serve people visiting or using the park.

The Friends of Tudor Park and Pavilion, who have been working on plans to rescue the pavilion since 2021, hope their fully costed scheme will win through and secure the council’s approval.

After extensive local consultations and fund-raising events, the organisation established by the friends of the park (FOTPP) now has charitable status and is confident of wide support within the Barnet Vale neighbourhood.

In outlining its call for expressions of interest, the council set no deadline so there is no immediate clarity over the next steps in the process.

What Barnet has said is that a prospective tenant should present proposals and a business plan to refurbish the pavilion to provide a community space and cafe to serve the park.

A change of use is a possibility, a long lease will be available, and offers are invited on the rent, but interested groups or businesses are warned that significant repair work is required and that it could cost as much as £500,000 to fully refurbish and modernise the building.

Simon Cohen, chair of the FOTPP trustees – seen here at their stall at Barnet Christmas Fayre – said they were waiting to hear if other expressions of interest had been made by potential developers and precisely how the council intended to conduct the process.

“Given that we have done so much preparatory work on rescuing the pavilion we are anxious to hear more about the next steps in the council’s process of seeking expressions of interest for what the council says is a development opportunity,” said Mr Cohen.

The key to their proposal is that the trustees themselves want to control and

manage the refurbishment of the pavilion.

As a first step the FOTPP believe they need to secure a lease of the pavilion from the council so that they can begin serious fund-raising and make an appeal to the National Lottery Community Fund.

A survey carried out in the neighbourhood recorded over 1,300 responses and a clear wish for a restored pavilion to offer a cafe and public facilities with flexible activity spaces and changing areas.

The trustees estimate that construction costs would reach £600,000 and that a restored pavilion could operate seven days a week from 9am to 9pm and offer a wide variety of activities including arts, community groups, fitness options and private event bookings.

If the FOTPP’s proposals are accepted by the council, the trustees estimate it would probably take two years from the granting of a lease to complete the restoration.

Earlier this year Barnet Council allocated to £200,000 from infra-structure funding for use within the next two years to assist with the refurbishment of the pavilion and that started the action the FOTPP has taken to get the project off the ground.

The pavilion and park were opened in 1920 as part of the factory estate of S. Maws and Sons to foster well-being and health among its employees and the local community.

It is considered a great example of art-deco community buildings and is now an important historical landmark but has been closed to the public for over 20 years and is in a serious state of disrepair.

Early in 2020 it was included in Barnet Council’s local heritage list as being of historical and architectural interest because of social and community value, age and rarity, and landmark qualities.