Published by the Heritage Lottery Fund in 2014.
State of UK Parks comprehensively reviews the condition and management of the UK’s public parks. The report sets a benchmark on the current condition of the UK’s public parks while looking at how the quality and nature of parks might change in the future.
The report, published in 2014, is based on three UK-wide surveys; a survey of local authority park managers, a survey of park friends and user groups, and a public opinion survey undertaken by Ipsos MORI, and draws on pre-existing data to assess how the condition of parks has changed over time.
Parks are under direct threat
• 86% of parks managers report cuts to revenue budgets since 2010, a trend they expect to continue over the next three years.
• 45% of local authorities are considering either selling parks or green spaces or transferring their management to others.
• 81% of council parks departments have lost skilled management staff since 2010 and 77% have lost front-line staff.
Parks are one of the most highly used public assets
• An estimated 2.6bn visits are made to the UK’s parks each year. An estimated 34million people make regular visits to parks.
• 68% of park users consider spending time in their local park as important or essential to their quality of life. This rises to 71% in urban areas and 81% for those with children under 10
• 70% of park managers have recorded increased visitor numbers to their principal parks over the last year
Trend towards greater community involvement
• In the past three years park managers have seen an increase of over 30% in the number of friends and park user groups and over half of expect this increase to continue.
• 47% of park friends groups say membership numbers have increased over the last three years.
• Community groups are playing an increasing role in championing and supporting parks – with an estimated £30million raised for parks annually by friends groups.
Download the report on the Heritage Lottery Fund website.