Eltham Palace is a Grade 1 listed building and one of English Heritage’s principal visitor attractions in London. In order to diversify and increase audiences for the asset, English Heritage has developed plans for the development of a new water play facility. The proposed facility, designed by Erect Architecture, has to be accommodated within an existing historic landscape with consideration given to its impact on access and circulation across the whole site.

English Heritage/Erect Architecture

July 2019 – ongoing

Project Objectives

English Heritage and Erect Architecture commissioned JSA to assess the impact of the proposed water play facility on the listed historic landscape to the south and east of the Palace complex. Consideration is being given to how the water play facility will integrate into a reinstated historic path network and landscape character areas . In parallel, JSA has considered the impact of the new water play park on access and parking, reflecting a proposed significant increase in visitor numbers. JSA has developed an over-arching project masterplan illustrating the spatial relationships between different site elements.

Issues, Challenges and Outcomes

Eltham Palace has a well-developed Conservation Plan with a wealth of historic information about the evolution of the site. This has been referenced in depth to develop a series of proposals for the water play facility, landscape character areas and historic path network that preserve the integrity of the site. The water play and ancillary proposals are now at pre-application planning stage.


  • Survey and analysis
  • Landscape masterplanning
  • Detailed design