My personal impression is that when the London Docklands Development Corporation handed over the park to the local council to maintain things went steadily downhill in the Russia Dock Woodland. Watching from the sidelines, it seemed to take a considerable amount of local action to mobilise official interest in resurrecting the site, which had become tatty and decayed.
It says a lot for the local community that not only do they interface closely with the local council to report problems, raise issues and ensure that maintenance work takes place, but some of them contribute voluntary labour to specific projects.
Details of TRUE's projects and of how volunteers can assist are posted regularly around the park, but you can contact Rebeka Clark, who runs the TRUE operation at Stave Hill to find out more. Here's what the TRUE website says about volunteering at Stave Hill:
Volunteers are always welcome at Stave Hill. Tasks are fun, varied and will suit all abilities. Children are welcome, but must be supervised by a parent or guardian. Tea, coffee and biscuits supplied.
The Stave Hill Irregulars meet on the second Saturday of the month, 11am-3.30pm.
The Stave Hill Regulars meet every Wednesday, 10am-4pm
Volunteers may do a half or full day. We meet up at the Green Portakabin, behind Bacon's College.
For further information, or to be included in the mailing list, please email Rebeka Clark or telephone 0207 237 9175