A park could be transformed with new facilities, a public café and a refuge for people to shelter from future emergencies caused by climate change.

A draft masterplan for Vine Road Recreation Ground, Barnes, is set to be developed into a planning application, marking a major step forwards for the project.

It comes after Richmond Council’s parks team and charity Barnes Common Limited won funding to develop the masterplan design into a formal planning application. The cash was awarded from the council’s climate emergency fund.

An earlier report on the project in 2021, from Barnes Common Limited, revealed the masterplan. It said the “park is clearly much-loved, underutilised and rundown in parts”.

The masterplan includes a new social hub with a café, courtyard with outdoor seating and play area. A new pedestrian entrance, pump track for skateboarders, roller-skaters and scooters, woodland playground, waterplay facilities and disabled parking also feature.

The development of a wetland area around river Beverely Brook, to encourage more wildlife and improve flood resilience, along with spaces for growing plants, workshops and crafting are also proposed in the masterplan. The lawn space would be kept under the scheme, for sports, dog walking and other uses.

The plans were drawn up by architects Studio Weave and LDA, after a tendering process carried out by Barnes Common Limited, according to the report.

The council said the masterplan received “massive support” from locals following informal consultation in 2021. Once submitted, the planning application for the scheme would be subject to formal consultation and a decision from the council in due course.

The social hub proposed for the park would be designed so it could also be used as a “refuge for at-risk members of the community during climate-related emergencies, such as flooding due to extreme rain, heatwaves or extreme cold snaps”, the council said.

The authority added it believes the plans to be “one of the first in the UK designed with this facility, bringing together climate-resilient building design alongside other benefits to wellbeing offered by a park environment”.

Lib Dem councillor Julia Neden-Watts, chair of the environment, sustainability, culture and sports committee, said: “I am delighted that Richmond Council are supporting this exciting and innovative proposal. Working together with the community to build resilience and foster wellbeing, while facing the increasing challenges of climate change.”

Mike Hildesley, chair of Barnes Common Ltd, said: “It is so encouraging to receive good news in these times of uncertainty. Moving forward to planning is a significant step towards realising the fantastic masterplan for this much-loved park.”