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Protecting our parks...

And its been signed by me already.

Not many family friendly areas around and those we do have should remain as far as I’m concerned…

Bedford

Duly signed, Eleanor. Will cascade this to like minds elsewhere also.

Wakefield, West Yorks.

’ve just signed that petition, also

Albox, Costa Almeria, Spain

When the council are looking to yet more cuts, parks seem one of the easy options….

ESW
Lincolnshire

@ESW – thanks for the information.

Birmingham Council is responsible for the many parks in this area and if they had their way, would build on them. They think this is an “upmarket” area (it is in parts) and do as little as possible. Sutton Park is 2,400 acres of heathland with seven lakes, a few restaurants, children’s play areas and plenty of challenging walks. Race for Life takes place once a year as well as a triathlon. Years ago it hosted a stage of the Lombard RAC Rally. There was also a system in place whereby local residents gained free entrance through a car sticker system. This was abolished when Birmingham took over and they have the cheek to charge for access most weekends.

At least Birmingham haven’t gone as far as Walsall Council. They removed the children’s play area in the playing field at rear of my mother’s house, citing lack of funds to maintain safety.

I’ve just had this email from 38 degrees flagging up concerns that our much loved local parks could be under threat. The link to sign the petition is here.

Dear Eleanor,
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:

SIGN THE PETITION


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?

SIGN THE PETITION


Thanks for being involved,

Trish, Megan, Charlotte and the 38 Degrees team

NOTES:
1 Heritage Lottery Fund: #parksmatter:
https://www.hlf.org.uk/about-us/news-features/parksmatter
Guardian: UK’s public parks face ‘decline and neglect’:
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/sep/07/uks-public-parks-face-decline-and-neglect-heritage-lottery-fund-report
2 Last year Battersea Park’s free adventure playground was bulldozed and replaced by a new adventure playground company that charges between £18 – £33 a session. A new report by the Heritage Lottery shows replacing free parks with charging services is becoming more common:
Guardian: Children are being priced out by ‘pay to play’ in public spaces:
https://www.theguardian.com/cities/2015/dec/13/parents-protest-pay-to-play-parks-privatising-green-spaces
3 Parliament: Public Parks Inquiry:
http://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/communities-and-local-government-committee/inquiries/parliament-2015/public-parks-16-17/
4 Local authorities have a set of “statutory duties” that they have to fulfil and protect. Things like what they prioritise in funding, and what services are their responsibility. Right now, nobody has the responsibility for looking after our parks and green spaces, so local councils see them as an opportunity to move money into other services, or even to make money. By making parks a statutory duty, it would be a legal requirement for them to be protected.
Data.gov.uk: Statutory duties placed on local government:
https://data.gov.uk/dataset/statutory-duties-placed-on-local-government
ESW
Lincolnshire
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