Gardens trusts group supports call for parks inquiry to protect legacy

The Association of Gardens Trusts has thrown its weight behind Horticulture Week's Make Parks a Priority campaign, which is calling for a parliamentary inquiry into the crisis facing urban parks.

In a message to colleagues urging them to spread the word about the Make Parks A Priority campaign, Gilly Drummond, president of the association, which represents 35 county gardens trusts and promotes the enjoyment of gardens and parks to the public, said: "We need to do our utmost to support this campaign by Horticulture Week.

"Our parks make a unique contribution to civilised living, particularly for those in urban areas estimated at 70 per cent of the population. They are an invaluable asset and are free to all."

She added: "There is a serious risk that some local authorities or individual councillors within them could use the cutbacks and/or lack of funding for maintenance to press for too high a percentage of housing development on these precious sites. Once gone, these green spaces have gone for good when they should be an important legacy for future generations."

Since the campaign was launched last month, 23 MPs have signed an early day motion (EDM) supporting the call for an inquiry into the crisis facing urban parks from disproportionate maintenance cuts and the lack of national representation.

Meanwhile, the National Federation for Parks & Green Spaces has urged hundreds of friends groups across the UK to write to their MPs asking them to sign the EDM.

- HW editor Kate Lowe will speak about the campaign at the National Contractors Forum (NCF) open meeting at next week's IoG Saltex at Windsor Racecourse. For further details, contact NCF organiser Bob Ivison at bob@ivisonconsulting.co.uk.

Make Parks a Priority - What you can do

Write to your MP

Ask your MP to help secure a select committee inquiry into urban parks by signing Early Day Motion 219. A template letter is available at our campaign website - www.Horticulture Week.co.uk/makeparksapriority - along with the full wording of EDM 219.

Spread the word

Encourage your parks' friends groups to write to their MP in support of the campaign. For a PDF copy of an article that gives full details about the campaign that you can forward to interested parties, please email Kate Lowe at kate.lowe@haymarket.com.

Follow us on Twitter @parksapriority and like our Make Parks A Priority Facebook page


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