Over 100 organisations have signed up to the Parks Charter in just ten days. The Parks Charter is a wake-up call to government to protect our parks because of the serious long-term damage being caused by budget cuts and lack of investment. Unless politicians act now, parks will go into serious decline, become problem spaces, and even risk being sold off.
The Gardens Trust is one of the founding organisations of the Parks Charter, as we have campaigned for the future of public parks for a long time. David Lambert, Trustee of The Gardens Trust, said ‘Our heritage of public parks is a national treasure but, as a discretionary service, parks remain first in line for budget cuts. Eight years of austerity have seen disastrous reductions in staffing and maintenance. We need central government to recognise the scale of the problem and the risk to health it poses, with all the consequent human and financial cost.’ Other groups who are involved include The Parks Alliance, Fields in Trust, Greenspace Scotland, Keep Britain Tidy and the National Federations of Parks and Green Spaces.
A wide range of local, community and national groups have already backed this call to protect our parks. Dave Morris, Chair of the National Federation of Parks and Green Spaces, said: ‘We are very pleased that only 10 days after the launch over 100 organisations have already signed up to back the new Charter. Of these, seventeen are national organisations including the Open Spaces Society, Sport and Recreation Alliance, and Lantra.
This demonstrates the depth of feeling throughout the UK that our parks and green spaces need proper long term recognition, funding and protection so that they can provide the wide range of essential benefits every community deserves. We call on all organisations that care about the future of our parks to sign the Charter.’
The charter asks political leaders to adopt six points:
Find out more on the Parks Charter website.