Local Authority funding has been reduced by approximately 40% since 2010/11, and further significant cuts are in the pipeline. Historic and natural environment is not a statutory service, and is highly impacted by cuts.
Delivery could potentially become untenable, resulting in immediate and long term decline as well as loss of green space.
Parks generate huge social, economic and environmental benefits such as reduction in depression with positive impacts on health and well being, air quality, flood prevention and tourism. 19% of local authorities specifically mentioned disposing of parks as opposed to other green spaces.
We have partnered with The National Trust to develop new models for parks part funded by social investment. In Newcastle, a city-wide Charitable Trust manage the parks with a blended funding model of endowment and enterprise income.
The endowment would provide a secure, sustainable income stream to support the income coming from more enterprising parks management and other sources.
An independent Parks Trust would have a dedicated focus on managing parks for a range of stakeholders and could seek to maximise social and environmental benefits
Being a charity gives financial benefits and the ability to fundraise
Governance is designed to be simple and transparent, balancing focused decision making with stakeholder involvement and influence.