Sherwood Forest is probably the best known forest in the world. It is connected with the famous legend of Robin Hood. In this forest, Robin Hood and his fellow men were robbing the rich and feeding the poor, always fighting against injustice and tyranny. How great, right?
Well, there is a place in Prague that is by many called “Sherwood Forest”. It is the park around the Main Train Station in Prague (in Czech Hlavni nadrazi). It is called “Sherwood Forest”, however, not for some second Robin Hood who is defending all needy, but because around this Main Train Station is the biggest concentration of homeless people in Prague.
I don’t know why this place attracts those people so much. It is true that inside this station, which is the biggest and busiest railway station in Prague, there are many benches and corners out of sight. And it is warm here. What is more, not far from the station is a missionary and charity organization Nadeje (in English Hope) which provides services to people in need.
Hlavni nadrazi is not the most dangerous place in Prague, but it isn’t nice place to walk through. You sometimes see those poor people sleeping on the floor, who usually don’t smell very well, and that is not the best first impression of Prague for those who arrive by train. It is a pity, especially because the building is a beautiful example of Art Nouveau style.
It is true, though, that since the end of 2006, a great reconstruction of Hlavni nadrazi and its surroundings for about 650 million CZK has started. This reconstruction should turn this slightly dirty station into a modern and representative building within 3 or 4 years without affecting the traffic.
Homeless people should find their home on a new boat that anchors on Vltava river from January and serves as a permanent home for homeless people in Prague.
The park’s real name is Vrchlickeho sady and is located just few minutes walk from Wenceslas Square.