Your Park Bristol & Bath

In 2018 Bristol Parks Forum were a key partner in an exciting project to form a charity to support parks across both Bristol & Bath.

The charity is now up and running as Your Park Bristol & Bath

The charity will raise money and support volunteering in parks, but will not take the ownership and maintenance of the parks away from the local authorities.

The project was part of the Rethinking Parks programme funded by National Lottery Community Fund, National Lottery Heritage Fund and Nesta.

The Parks Forum joined forces with Bristol City Council and Bath & North East Somerset Council in a successful bid for funding from the Nesta Rethinking Parks programme to develop this project.

The charity launched as the Bristol & Bath Parks Foundation at the Festival of Nature in June 2019.

Some of the aims of the charity include:

  • Allow residents, visitors, community organisations and local businesses to support improvements and activities in parks;
  • Develop sustainable relationships between business, parks and their communities;
  • Enable public donations for specific projects both in individual parks and across the cities;
  • Use innovative ideas to seek unrestricted public donations, including legacies;
  • Work with park groups and others to apply for grants;
  • Encourage and facilitate more volunteering in parks;

Other partners in the project were; The Natural History Consortium, Bournemouth Parks Foundation, Quartet Community Foundation and Bristol Green Capital Partnership.

The charity’s collaborative approach will test how public giving, volunteering and social enterprise can be encouraged to benefit parks for public use and enjoyment. The work will build on and learn from Bournemouth Parks Foundation (now ‘The Parks Foundation’) – the pioneering Foundation that was supported by Rethinking Parks in 2014 (along with our ParkWork project). Your Park Bristol & Bath will also share lessons learnt with South Gloucestershire and North Somerset Councils in the final 6 months of the project.

The Rethinking Parks Replication Award assisted eight projects supporting new ways of running parks with communities and councils working together to make the most of these vital community assets, including; forming parks foundations, nurturing friends groups and generating new income streams.

The award is part of the Rethinking Parks initiative which aims to help those with creative and innovative ideas for running public spaces and plans to help them thrive. The projects that have been awarded funding have all demonstrated excellent potential for changing the way that public space is used and managed, putting communities at the heart of ideas to make parks more sustainable and vibrant.

Read more:
Nesta blog page with information on all eight successful bids

Heritage Fund website news item

Other Parks Charities:

The Parks Foundation (Bounemouth, Christchurch & Poole)

Love Leeds Parks

Parks Alive (Redcar & Cleveland)

Urban Green Newcastle

The Parks Trust (Milton Keynes)

Seattle Parks Foundation