Chiswick House Lock In

Grounds users demand better warning of gate closures

While Chiswick residents, young and old enjoyed their first proper snow for many years, some narrowly avoided the misfortune of being locked inside Chiswick House Grounds. A number of visitors to the grounds on Wednesday afternoon were not regulars and therefore unaware that the gates closed at 4.30 due to the lack of clear notices or the absence of any form of warning.

The subject of gate signs was raised with CIP, the organisation with responsibility for the grounds, back in December but no action was taken.

Following this latest incident, which was raised on the Chiswick discussion forum, a representative from CIP stated that arrangements will be made to have signs put on each gate of the park, advising that gate closing commences at 4.15pm. The final gate to be closed at 4.30pm, will be the main gate.

In response to the issue that there is no warning that the gates are being locked CIP answered “Due to the large area of the grounds, it is not feasible to ring a bell as this would more than likely not be heard. Unfortunately we have inadequate resources to conduct a full patrol of the park to ensure that it has been vacated.”

However CIP has now advised that whistles will be blown at 4.15, warning visitors to vacate the grounds. Clearly stated on all gate signs will be the fact that the warden will sound a whistle whilst closing.

The gates will be closed in a set order as follows :

1: Park Road
2: Staveley Road
3: Burlington Lane School Gate
4: Burlington Lane Main Gate
5: Burlington Lane Artists Lodge Gate
6: Dukes Avenue A4 Entrance
7: A4 Car Park Gate

January 10th 2003

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