Seven parks are beneficiaries of Heritage Lottery Fund
The Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) and the Big Lottery Fund have given grants totalling £20.6 million to seven parks..
The organisations have allocated the money for important regeneration works, new community facilities and a range of activities that will generate income and involve volunteers.
This Lottery investment in parks comes six months after the publication of HLF’s report State of UK Public Parks 2014: Renaissance to Risk which revealed that the UK’s public parks are at serious risk of decline unless innovative ways of funding and maintaining them are found.
Carole Souter, chief executive of HLF, said on behalf of HLF and the Big Lottery Fund: 'Since our report was published, it’s become even clearer that parks are facing an uncertain future, in spite of being more popular than ever. Today’s investment will not only help to regenerate these historic parks, ensuring local people have access to high quality green spaces, but it also brings to life several exciting plans that will see parks used for training, events and activities.'
Currently unused structures including walled gardens, gardener’s cottages and historic halls and houses will be repaired and used as volunteer and training centres, event spaces and community facilities.
The parks funded are also partnering with schools and colleges, ensuring that the local community can learn a range of horticulture and other skills, enabling them to get involved in the restoration and future management and maintenance of their parks. Several apprenticeships will also be offered.
Community sports facilities, including those previously used by Olympic champions but currently in a poor state, will be restored for both informal and organised sports.
The funding breaks down as follows:
HLF/Big Lottery Fund joint grants in England
Houghton Hall Park, Bedfordshire £2,196,600
Highfields Park, Nottingham £3,240,500
Stanmer Park, Brighton £4,077,800
Cannon Hall Park and Gardens, Barnsley £2,834,000
The Canons, Mitcham, South London £3,981,500
Poole Park, Dorset £2,970,200
HLF only funded grants
Bishop’s Park, Carmarthenshire £1,264,800