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Last Updated: Tuesday, 12 April, 2005, 14:53 GMT 15:53 UK
Diana fountain work 'may ruin it'
Children play in Diana fountain
The Royal Parks say the fountain should still open on time
Work to improve the troubled Diana Memorial Fountain could ruin the look of it, according to council officials.

Westminster Council said its planning officers wanted to raise objections over fencing and extra resistant turf being installed around the fountain.

The memorial, in Hyde Park, central London, shut in January so work to improve drainage and combat flooding could take place.

A Royal Parks spokesman said he was sure a compromise could be reached.

The fountain opened to the public in July last year but had to be closed on several occasions when visitors slipped and were hurt.

When you start putting fences round an area which is supposed to be open and serene, it becomes pointless having it at all
Westminster Council spokesman

A Westminster Council spokesman said: "The planning officers have advised that we should be raising objections to the fencing and ask them to come up with something that is more attractive, such as plants or a hedge.

"We accept the reasons that they are doing the hard turf but we are disappointed that it has become necessary.

"When you start putting fences round an area which is supposed to be open and serene, it becomes pointless having it at all."

The works, which are thought to have cost more than 150,000, are due to end soon with the memorial re-opening in the first week of May.

The Royal Parks spokesman said the council's suggestions would be taken seriously but he did not think this would delay the fountain's reopening.




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