Saturday, 24 September 2016

Parks under threat

Parks are NOT a statutory service which means local authorities do not have to fund them properly. The Communities and Local Government Committee is looking into the state of of our parks and are being urged to change the law so that they become a statutory service. The cost of this in the grand scheme of things is small, but the impact is enormous. Open space is vital to the well being of the population and a good park is used in numerous ways by all ages and cultures. 

Currently approx £1.24bn is spent maintaining parks and open spaces in the UK, but to do it properly £2bn is needed. Bearing in mind the cost of Hinckley Point at £18bn this is peanuts! It would be a serious waste of public money if the parks were allowed to deteriorate to the state they were in 10 to 20 years ago before lottery money was spent on refurbishing them.

We believe Waltham Forest is carrying out a review of our parks but we have not been able to get any information yet. Keep a close on eye on your park and if you feel standards are dropping then contact your councillors and complain. Also let me know as I attend the London Green Spaces Friends Groups Network and we meet every two months and get feed back from the other London Boroughs and the news is not looking good.

For more detail take a look at the Heritage Lottery's latest State of UK Public Parks - it is not looking good!

State of UK Public Parks

Sign the Petition

To all friends of UK parks - please forward widely. 82,000 people signed in the first 24hrs!
Organised by '38 degrees' members. Supported by the National Federation of Parks and Green Spaces.

Save Our Parks - a call for Government Action to avert crisisPlease sign the new petition - tens of thousands already have! 

Publicise via Facebook: via Twitter:

Britain’s parks are at risk. There’s no legal responsibility to look after them and squeezed budgets mean our local green spaces - from playgrounds, to the park you relax in on your lunch break - don’t have the money they need. [1] We could end up being forced to pay to use our parks - or lose them altogether. [2]

A group of MPs are looking into the crisis right now. They’re thinking of making protecting parks a legal requirement, and they’ll advise the government on what to do. [3] A huge petition, signed by all of us, will prove how much we love our parks. It could convince the MPs to come up with a water-tight plan for protecting them. 

Can you sign the petition now and demand that looking after our parks is made a legal requirement by the government? [4] It only takes 30 seconds to add your name:

Parks are for everyone. On a summer’s day they’re filled with families enjoying the sunshine and kids having a kick-about with their friends. If they aren’t protected they could be flogged to private companies - forcing us to pay to visit them and destroying their magic. Or they could be closed and lost completely.

The MPs are holding a consultation to ask the public their opinion, but it closes soon. If MPs don’t hear from us, we could be left with a woolly plan that doesn’t fix the problem. But a huge petition, launched today, demanding the government takes responsibility for looking after our parks, would be hard for them to ignore. It’s the first step in protecting our parks, and showing they matter to us all. 

Can you add your name to the petition now?

Thanks for being involved,

Trish, Megan, Charlotte and the 38 Degrees team

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