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Richmond today

Richmond is an outer London borough in South West London. It has a population of 199,157 and covers an area of over 5000 hectares. 57% of the borough is open space1, with 21 miles of river frontage and it is the only borough to span both sides of the River Thames.

Richmond has:

For full contextual picture of the borough please visit DataRich.

Engagement and investment in culture

  • 1,074,655 physical items borrowed from libraries during 19/20
  • 199,817 e-library items borrowed from libraries during the COVID-19 pandemic (March 20-March 21)
  • 1,164,487 attendances at sports facilities in 19/20
  • 67.7% of young people aged 5 - 16 physically active3
  • 62,535 bookings for sports facilities & tennis courts within LBRUT parks during 20/21
  • 31,485 visits to Orleans House Gallery in 19/20
  • 400+ voluntary cultural organisations
  • 100+ community events in parks annually
  • 23,000 bike journeys per day4
  • £8,828,400 total annual spend on LBRUT cultural services 19/20

SWOT analysis


  • Physical resources & natural environment - open space & river
  • Rich heritage & history
  • Active & engaged population with highest adult employment rate in London5
  • High percentage of children & young people physically active
  • Existing cultural infrastructure and extensive voluntary sector
  • Home to major international cultural attractions including Kew Gardens, Hampton Court Palace, Twickenham Stadium, Richmond and Bushy Parks


  • High cost of living and lack of affordable housing – leading to inequality6
  • Under-developed professional arts sector
  • Limited accessible and affordable spaces for arts and community use
  • Diversity and inclusion in cultural sector
  • Uncoordinated programming and marketing
  • Public perception of the borough and reputation across London is limited
  • Difficult for smaller organisations to benefit from tourism and reputation of major cultural attractions
  • Securing external funding for culture


  • How culture is created and consumed post COVID-19
  • Embedding culture within key agendas – public health, economic development, the creative industries to help to meet outcomes
  • Attracting national and international visitors to the borough
  • Presenting the borough’s history and heritage in new ways
  • Opportunity to benefit from pan London initiatives, partnerships and funding


  • Climate Emergency
  • COVID-19 recovery: economic and health and wellbeing
  • Ageing population7
  • Youth wellbeing and opportunity8
  • Attracting new investment and jobs
  • Proximity to central London – many residents can easily access services not available in the borough
  • Uncertain funding landscape

Next: Vision


  1. The average % of open space for an outer London borough is 38% GiGL
  2. Cultural Infrastructure Map Mayor of London
  3. London & national average is 46% Data Rich (Public Health England) 
  4. 2nd out of 33 London boroughs DataRich
  5. 80% of working-age adults are in employment & 49% volunteer. DataRich
  6. Richmond displays the fifth highest rate for income inequality in London and the highest GCSE attainment gap of all London boroughs between disadvantaged school children and those not facing disadvantage (31% gap) One Richmond Youth Needs Analysis 2020
  7. The number of people aged 65 years and over is projected to increase to 43,100 by 2035. DataRich
  8. Richmond displays the fourth worst average mental wellbeing score for 15 year-olds in London and has the highest proportion amongst London boroughs of young people engaging in three or more risky behaviours. One Richmond Youth Needs Analysis 2020

Updated: 25 October 2021

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