Brexit: Parks and gardens

Opportunities

- Weak pound could see more garden visitors thanks to "staycations" and tourist influx.

- Long-term, import substitution could benefit everyone and increase skills within horticulture.

- Procurement will change as the European Procurement Directives could no longer apply - a chance to lobby for improvements such as standardised grounds maintenance procurement.

Challenges

- Parks departments bracing for further austerity.

- Economic turmoil and trade uncertainty mean clients and contractors must be flexible on pricing.

- Falling pound hitting parks that buy nursery stock from overseas and will cause issues for European holding companies with UK landscape maintenance arms. Some UK councils also pay in overseas currencies.

- Contracts are usually domiciled in the UK but when dealing with European businesses parties can appeal to the European court. What will happen to this arrangement?

Comment

Parks consultant, Ken McAnespie

"The vast majority of the hundreds of laws that affect the use of parks and open spaces date back well over 50 years and most are pre-Europe. What can and cannot be done within our parks and open spaces is therefore very much unaffected."

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