Abbotshall Road Playing Field now ‘Our Place’

t was back 2011 that Lewisham Council agreed to transfer the Abbotshall Road Playing Field, part of the the Corbett estate, to Community Teachsport at a peppercorn rent on a 25-year lease.

(Teachsport is a body of professionally qualified sports instructors used by educational establishments all over London when they want to bring more and better sporting activities for kids into school; Community Teachsport is its not-for-profit sister organisation.)

Lewisham Council agreed to the transfer on the condition that Community Teachsport would develop the playing field as a Health Hub for the community, aiming to prevent illness and disease by encouraging local residents to adopt healthier lifestyles – and that, in partnership with the Archibald Corbett Society, is exactly what they’re planning to do.

Key health Issues our community needs to tackle:

  • Child obesity in Lewisham where the rates are among the highest in London
  • Adult obesity where 64% of adults in the UK are classed as being overweight or obese with a prediction of a huge increase in heart attacks, strokes and diabetes
  • The borough of Lewisham has the highest number in London of residents from the Caribbean with the number increasing – a trend unique to the borough. African Caribbean residents make up 25% of residents in Catford South Ward and also make up more than 25% of those living with cardiovascular disease, diabetes, hypertension and mental health illness
  • Recent research findings from the Princes Trust states long-term unemployed young people are more than twice as likely as their peers to have been prescribed anti-depressants, while one in three have contemplated suicide and one in four have self-harmed
  • The lack of outdoor sports facilities for primary and secondary schools both in the Corbett estate and in Lewisham and the need to encourage children to be active, lead a healthy lifestyle and increase their confidence to succeed in future life

To find out how Community Teachsport and the Corbett Society plan to tackle these problems, read the Our Place Operational Plan here

Abbotshall Road Healthy Lifestyle Centre will be launched on Bank Holiday Monday 25th May 2015with a gala opening. Put the date in your diary and watch this space for further updates.