Portsmouth City Council has been granted funding from the South Western Railway Customer and Communities Improvement Fund to make improvements to a green area in Fratton.

The space, which sits between the corner of Fawcett Road and Goldsmith Avenue, is one of the few green spaces in the area, offering walking and cycling routes and a link for passenger access to the nearby Fratton station.

Plans for the space will include planting, seating, and lighting to create a pocket park gateway to Fratton train station. It sits within the wider Safer Streets initiative to make Portsmouth a safer place to live, work and visit.

Councillor Steve Pitt, leader of the council said: “We are pleased to see this area has been granted funding for improvements, this is a positive step forward to create more green spaces across the city. It’s a great opportunity to create a much more functional, and greener route from the station to the seafront.

“Annually, we see thousands of people use this route, so it is essential that we make the area safe for those travelling in the early morning, or late at night.”

Maryam Zade, South Western Railway’s Customer and Communities Improvement Fund Manager, said: “Connecting people and communities is at the heart of our business and CCIF, our Customer and Communities Improvement Fund, gives us an opportunity to support projects that help to make that connection.

“This project is turning a piece of open space into a Pocket Park to give the local community a new, brighter and safer space for recreation as well as providing improved pedestrian access to Fratton station and we were delighted to support it”.

The South Western Railway Customer and Communities Improvement Fund supports projects that have a community benefit and addresses areas of social need across the network. You can find out more here: Customer and Communities Improvement Fund 2022 | South Western Railway.

Designs for the Pocket Park have now been approved, and construction is expected to start in Spring 2024.