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Responding to the Government's inquiry into public parks

GFA Pocket park

Published last week, the Communities and Local Government Committee report into public parks highlights the crisis facing the parks sector in England, warning that 'parks are at a tipping point and face a period of decline with potentially severe consequences unless their vital contribution to areas such as public health, community integration and climate change mitigation is recognised.'

It also emphasises how important they are to communities across the country, in addition to their other benefits including tackling climate change, preventing flooding, reducing air pollution exposure and boosting health.

MPs warned that unless parks were recognised as "much more than just grass and tulips", there was a risk of turning the clock back to an era of neglect seen 20 to 30 years ago. They urged councils to find new ways to fund and manage parks, adding that they should remain owned by local authorities and be freely available to everyone.

The Green Flag Award scheme welcomes this report, as it has been part of parks renaissance over the past 20 years, and looks forward to working with Government, both nationally and locally, as well as parks departments and communities in supporting our parks both now and for future generations.

 

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