William Eichler 24 October 2016

Public parks generate ‘large surplus’ of £1.2bn

Public parks generate ‘large surplus’ of £1.2bn image

Public parks and green spaces provide benefits worth over a billion pounds and are not the liability they appear in conventional public accounts, a new study reveals.

New research by Vivid Economics published today by the National Trust showed parks provide benefits worth £1.2bn, largely through the contribution they make to residents’ physical and mental wellbeing.

This goes against the conventional wisdom—derived from how they appear in public accounts—that they are a £16m liability.

The House of Commons Communities and Local Government Committee today will begin hearing evidence for their inquiry into the funding crisis facing public parks.

Heritage Lottery Fund research has shown many councils face cuts to their parks budgets of up to 20%, with some facing cuts of 50-100% by 2020.

Vivid Economic’s director Robin Smale urged MPs giving evidence to the committee to consider the wider public benefits that are derived from parks and green spaces rather than their immediate financial cost.

‘Parks generate a large surplus for society in contrast to the financial liability that they appear to be in local authority financial statements,’ he said.

‘It’s essential that decisions about our parks are based on comprehensive and balanced financial accounts, which incorporate the full value of public services.

‘Reliance on the very partial expenditure and revenue records available to local authorities will be against the public interest.’

The power of local systems to save lives image

The power of local systems to save lives

Councils and their partners could do even more to contain the spread of COVID-19 if properly funded to undertake a robust localised system of testing, tracking and tracing, argues Professor Donna Hall.
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Head of Looked After Children and Vulnerable Young People

Enfield London Borough Council
Up to £89,319
 This is an exciting opportunity to lead all the services that support Enfield’s children in care and care leavers. Enfield (City/Town), London (Greater)
Recuriter: Enfield London Borough Council

Head of Communities

Kirklees Metropolitan Council
to £61,751 (pay award pending)
We are looking for an innovative and knowledgeable senior professional to join our leadership team with strong experience of working in communities... Kirklees, West Yorkshire
Recuriter: Kirklees Metropolitan Council

Economic Development Officer (Town Centres)

North West Leicestershire District Council
Band F, £29,636 - £32,878 per annum
The Economic Development Officer (Town Centres) post forms part of the Council’s Business Focus team who provide help directly to businesses. Coalville, Leicestershire
Recuriter: North West Leicestershire District Council

Educational Psychologist

Camden London Borough Council
£44,131 - £53,34
The ideal candidates will have an excellent understanding of psychological frameworks and their application in... Camden, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Camden London Borough Council

Economic Development Officer

North West Leicestershire District Council
Band F, £29,636 - £32,878
Are you interested in a challenge and want to help shape the future of North West Leicestershire? Coalville, Leicestershire
Recuriter: North West Leicestershire District Council

Public Property

Latest issue - Public Property News

This issue of Public Property examines how how flexible workspaces can lead the way in regeneration for local authorities, Why local authority intervention is key to successful urban regeneration schemes and if the Government’s challenge of embracing beauty is an opportunity for communities.

The March issue also takes a closer look at Blackburn with Darwen Council's first digital health hub to help people gain control over health and care services.

Register for your free digital issue