The Parks Alliance, the UK’s voice of parks, has been awarded £9,600 by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) to establish a not-for-profit membership organisation that represents the people and organisations that create, maintain, invest in and use the public green spaces at the heart of UK life.
The project, called ‘Creating A National Voice for Parks’, will provide the basis for establishing a wider and connected community network of those who support the aims of The Parks Alliance. The HLF grant will enable The Parks Alliance to research best practice membership models and recommend the best membership model to achieve financial sustainability.
Speaking about ‘Creating A National Voice for Parks’, Mark Camley, Chairman of The Parks Alliance, said: “We know how much people value parks as 68 per cent of users consider spending time in their local park essential to their quality of life. This project will take us one step closer to ensuring parks in the UK are enhanced and their contribution to quality of life is protected. It will help all those organisations associated with parks and green spaces to prosper, and all those involved in maintaining and creating parks and green spaces will gain new skills and insight.”
Drew Bennellick, Head of Landscape and Natural Heritage at HLF, said: “Despite a major renaissance, thanks in part to National Lottery investment, parks face an uncertain future. This money will enable The Parks Alliance to take a strategic role in leading the sector through a challenging financial landscape, ensuring parks adapt and thrive.”
The Parks Alliance works to:
- Protect and improve the country’s public parks for future generations.
- Increase understanding among national politicians and policy makers of the value of public parks to the current and future quality of life and health in the UK.
- Increase understanding among national and local politicians and decision makers that parks are a crucial part of social and physical infrastructure supporting education, flood control, health improvement, social cohesion, wildlife and helping us adapt to climate change.
- Secure and boost the existing world-leading skills and expertise delivering UK parks as well as quality training and employment opportunities.
- Influence national, regional and local policies and funding decisions that impact on parks.