Recycling in Parks

In Bristol’s year as European Green Capital, Bristol Parks Forum are pleased to be working with Bristol Parks to install recycling bins in ten of Bristol’s parks.

If this pilot project is successful then we hope to roll it out to more parks in the future.

Bristol Parks Forum originally applied for a Green Capital Strategic Grant for this project; our application was turned down but Bristol City Council have now found alternative funding to allow the project to go ahead.

TripleBinThe project will involve replacing 42 existing bins with recycling bins similar to the one shown here, with sections for metal cans, plastic bottles and general waste (including dog waste). In addition 4 other existing bins will be coverted. The actual bins will have additional signage to make it clear what can be put in each section.

We have a provisional list of parks and will be contacting the relevant park groups to ensure they are happy with the proposed locations before going ahead. We will not be replacing all the bins in the selected parks, it will be those that are most used. Bins that are removed and are still in a servicable condition will be used to replace damaged bins or add additional bins in other parks.

Cans and plastic bottles have been targeted because they form a high percentage of the waste collected from parks. The success of the project will be based the volume of recycled material collected that is sufficiently free from contamination to be sent to recycling plants.

Local Nature Reserves – Expressions of Interest

Delcaration of Manor Woods Valley LNR Feb 2008
Delcaration of Manor Woods Valley LNR Feb 2008
As part of Bristol Green Capital 2015, Bristol City Council wishes to achieve a network of 16 Local Nature Reserves (LNRs) across the city (target set in the Parks and Green Space Strategy, 2008).

Bristol currently has 8 LNRs. A further 4 sites are in the process of being designated (Lamplighter’s Marsh, Avon New Cut, Northern Slopes and Narroways Millennium Green). As such, they are looking to designate at least four more Local Nature Reserves during 2015.

The Council are now inviting expressions of interest from communities who may wish to see their site considered for designation as a Local Nature Reserve.

The criteria for selection are set by the legislation governing Local Nature Reserves (see
The main considerations are:
• The site is important for wildlife (we are only considering sites that are designated Sites of Nature Conservation Interest);
• The site is well used and there is high public enjoyment of its wildlife;
• The site is owned by the council (or the landowner supports designation as a LNR);
• There is a site management plan (or one can be produced during 2015), and
• Natural England would be supportive of the designation.

To seek designation of a site as a Local Nature Reserve please download and return a simple one page form from either of the links below:

LNR Expression of Interest (Word)

LNR Expression of Interest (pdf)

Please return your expressions of interest by Monday 13th April 2015 to

If you would like to discuss any aspect, please call or email Richard Ennion on 0117 9222001 or

It may be necessary to prioritise sites for designation. Considerations will include: use of the site by the community, whether there is an active community group, importance for wildlife and potential for educational use. Ultimately, designation of a site as a LNR will be dependent on meeting legally defined requirements.


Some benefits to declaring LNRs:

• Identifying a site as an LNR clearly indicates to the local community and to visitors to the site, that it is an area to be protected and managed primarily for wildlife and for the informal enjoyment of nature;
• The LNR designation elevates a site’s status and value in the eyes of both the Local Authority and the local community. Community groups gain a sense of pride in having their site selected for designation;
• Improves accessibility, by providing more places where people can enjoy contact with nature, and
• Widens opportunities to attract grant funding.

Bristol’s current Local Nature Reserves are:

Manor Woods Valley LNR
Eastwood Farm LNR
Royate Hill LNR
Lawrence Weston Moor LNR
Troopers Hill LNR
Callington Road LNR
Badock’s Wood LNR
Stockwood Open Space LNR
• Avon New Cut c. LNR (subject to legal designation)
• Narroways Millennium Green c. LNR (subject to legal designation)
• Lamplighter’s Marsh c. LNR (subject to legal designation)
• Northern Slopes c. LNR (subject to legal designation)

Green Capital Grants Update

logo-bristol2015-2row-@2xBristol Parks Forum has submitted six applications for grants to run projects during Bristol’s Green Capital year in 2015. This is in addition to applications made by park groups and others for events and projects in their parks and neighbourhoods.

There are three different grant streams available from depending on the size of the projects. The Parks Forum has applied for strategic grants which are for projects from £25k – £50k.

Listing of Bristol Parks Forum Applications

Applications for the strategic grants have now closed, but there is still time to apply for smaller grants. The smallest grants for local initiatives and events are being distributed through the Neighbourhood Partnerships which each have an initial £10,000 to allocate to projects in their area. Each Partnership has its own closing dates and some have passed but there is more money to be allocated so there may be a second round of applications in some areas.

For grants of up to £10,000 there is The Bristol 2015 Small Grants Fund which is being administered by Quartet. The first closing date for this has passed but there are three further rounds with dealines in 2015:
January 5th, April 6th and July 1st.

There is lots of other information on the Bristol 2015 website and more will be added as 2015 approaches, including details of the many events that are planned including those funded by these grants.

Green Capital 2015 Events

logo-bristol2015-2row-@2xBristol 2015 has now launched its initial Events Programme.

Details can be seen at where there is a pdf file to download which will be updated as more events are added.

Park Groups can sign up and add their own events to the events calendar, which will also take you through a simple process to access the Bristol 2015 brand. To do this, go to and click on “Get Involved”.

If you are planning an event then there are a range of Green Capital Grants available to help fund them.

Some of the events will be one off celebrations, while others with be projects running throughout the year.

One project that will be of partiicular interest to BPF members will be the designation of 4 new Local Nature Reserves in addition to the 4 that are in the process of being designated now as a result of the Wild City Project that finished earlier this year.

Bristol 2015 say:

Bristol will celebrate improved environmental protection of several areas by completing a programme of designating eight new Local Nature Reserves, doubling the number in the city between October 2014 and October 2015. The city plans to designate four new LNRs before the end of 2014 in preparation for 2015 – Lamplighters Marsh (Shirehampton), Avon New Cut (Southville), Northern Slopes (Knowle, Knowle West and Bedmister), Narrow Ways Junction (St Werburghs). Another four are planned to follow by October 2015, with applications opening earlier in the year.

A list of the 8 current Local Nature Reserves and the 4 currently being designated can be seen here

Honouring Bristol’s Greenest Volunteers

GreenVolsLogoThe Bristol we know and enjoy everyday is one of the greenest places to live in Europe, leafy open spaces visible all around us, some subtly hidden away, and much of it the result of the tireless, unpaid efforts of thousands of our fellow citizens.

From morning birdsong to gardens busy with insects, places to explore wildlife or simply somewhere green to walk through on the way to work, we wouldn’t be able to benefit from the city in which we live were it not for these volunteers, whose labours mostly go unrecognised.

To honour these properly unsung heroes, Bristol Green Capital 2015 is hosting this year’s Green Volunteer Awards and asking the people of Bristol to nominate their green champions.

Eight categories are divided into awards for Bristol-based individuals and projects, all recognising their efforts to keep Bristol green, rich in biodiversity and more sustainable. Nominations opened on September 23rd, exactly 100 days from when Bristol assumes the official mantle of European Green Capital 2015.

The awards ceremony itself will be held 50 days out, on November 12th, at the Paintworks on the Bath Road. Tickets for the ceremony are free but need to be booked in advance.

Nominations aren’t restricted to those who wield a shovel or fork in all sorts of inclement weather, previous winners have included people who administrate green projects, their voluntary work crucial in keeping their organisations viable.

The closing date for Green Volunteer Awards nominations is Sunday, October 26th, judging will start the next day.

On the night, award winners will receive a certificate commemorating their award, as well as plaque specially commissioned from a piece of tree felled in the Bristol area for tree conservation and sustainability purposes.

• Nominate an individual or a project for the Green Volunteers Awards 2014

• Book Now – Green Volunteers Awards 2014 12th November / Paintworks, Bristol / 6.30pm – 11.00pm

Green Capital 2015 – Grants

logo-bristol2015-2row-@2xWith just 100 days to go until the start of Bristol’s Green Capital year the Bristol 2015 Company has revamped its website and introduced a new branding at

For Parks Forum members, the most important section of the new website at the moment is probably on the availability of grants. There are three different grant streams available depending on the size of the projects. The smallest grants for local initiatives and events are being distributed through the Neighbourhood Partnerships which each have an initial £10,000 to allocate to projects in their area. Each Partnership has its own closing dates.

For larger projects grants of up to £10,000 there is The Bristol 2015 Small Grants Fund which is being administered by Quartet. There will be four opportunities to apply for a grant for this fund. The application deadlines are 17th October 2014 and then in 2015 January 5th, April 6th and July 1st.

The third grant stream is for larger strategic grants of £25k – £50k.

There is lots of other information on the website and more will be added as 2015 approaches, including details of the many events that are planned. One of our committee members gets a mention on the website here:

BGC_LogoBristol Parks Forum along with many other organisations in the City are members of the Bristol Green Capital Partnership which has its own website at The Partnership has 12 thematic action groups working to make Bristol a greener city and this work will continue after 2015. There are many links between the two organisations and much of what Bristol 2015 does will be driven by the Partnership.

Parks Forum committee member, Fraser Bridgeford, is co-chair of the Nature, Wildlife and Green Spaces Action Group along with Robin Maynard (Avon Wildlife Trust).

Parks Maintenance

The Bristol Parks proposals to bring the grounds maintenance ‘in-house’ for at least 2 years from March 2015 were agreed at the Cabinet meeting on Tuesday (1st July).

The Cabinet report can be seen here

As discussed at the BPF meeting on 28th June the plans are for the grounds maintenance work to be brought back in-house which will give more flexibility to change specifications and priorities.

Neighbourhood Partnerships and Park Groups will have more say in what is done in our parks and park groups or others will be able to do more in their parks to improve them if they wish. We will continue the discussions started with Bristol Parks at the meeting about the mechanics of this.

Despite what you may have seen in the media, Bristol City Council / Bristol Parks have made no references to volunteers cutting grass and there are NO PLANS FOR THAT TO HAPPEN.

Core maintenance will continue to be carried out by the current in-house teams and contractors until February. The Contractors’ employees who work on the Bristol contracts will then transfer to BCC via the TUPE process and will then be employed directly.

The Labour group amendment to this year’s budget delayed the proposed £1/2m budget cut to the Grounds Maintenance budget by 12 months to 2015/16. The proposed cut is 8.5% of the existing net budget of £5.9m. (The actual cost of Grounds Maintenance is £7.3m part of which is covered by income so the actual cut is a slightly lower percentage than this; the figures are in the Cabinet Report). As such Bristol could be said to have got off lightly compared to other core cities, however, cuts on this scale will have an impact. Prior to the 2015/16 budget being finalised in February, the BPF committee will be arguing that the year in which Bristol is Green Capital is not the time to make these cuts.

Green Capital Partnership

BGC_LogoBristol Parks Forum are now members of the Bristol Green Capital Parnership –

The Partnership is a free membership organisation whose aim is to make Bristol “a low carbon city with a high quality of life for all”.

The BPF committee agreed to join the Partnership because they considered it important that the BPF and Park Groups have a say in the plans for Bristol Green Capital 2015. Being members may also help us access funds to benefit green spaces in 2015.

The partnership is currently setting up sub-groups to focus on particular sectors, these groups will then feed into a steering group that will create the partnership’s strategy and work with the company that is being set up to run Bristol Green Capital 2015 – see

One of the groups will cover Nature, Wildlife and Green Spaces and will probably be led by the West of England Nature Partnership, the BPF will be part of this group.

Several Park Groups are also members of the Partnership in their own right. If your group wishes to join then you can do so by signing up to the Green Capital Partnership Pledge

You can see the full list of members of the Partnership at