GreenSpace leads call for responses to government consultation

Park leaders are rallying the sector to reply to a Government consultation on improving support for volunteers and charities, which it feels is too rushed.

Parks charity GreenSpace wrote to its members urging them to respond quickly to the document Supporting a Stronger Civil Society.

The Cabinet Office wants feedback on forging better links with "civil society" groups to meet its "Big Society" agenda.

"We want to open our public services to new providers including the voluntary and community sector," said civil society minister Nick Hurd.

"We want to end top-down initiatives that filter spending through multiple layers and we want to make support more relevant and simpler."

Nine of the 10 questions in the document have 6 January deadlines but the ninth, on how the Government works with national infrastructure, has a deadline of 25 November.

GreenSpace business development manager David Tibbatts said: "We don't think there is time to draw together a collective response to question nine."

Instead, he suggested members download the paper and make their own responses. "The questions provide opportunities for organisations to highlight their own ideas, initiatives and proposals," he said.

The deadline for the question had been brought forward "due to specific timing requirements for any new strategic partners programme", the Government said.

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