Alongside the name change, the group representing those working in the public parks and open spaces sector has also launched a new website

The Parks Management Forum has now renamed to the Parks Management Association.

Paul Rabbits, Chairman of the Parks Management Asociation has also announced the launch of a new website to go with the name change.

Paul said “The Parks Management Association exists to represent those individuals and organisations working in the public parks and open spaces sector, whether in the public, private or third sector. The Association remains independent and will aim to work through a steering group of parks professionals acting in the interest of public parks in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

“The Association will act as the lead commissioning, collaborating and coordinating body for the sector in relation to skills, knowledge, continuing professional development, activation in the community, advocacy and wider representation. Its complete independence will allow it to champion the value of public parks and open spaces and steer the best intervention and development amongst the various organisations that work within the parks sector.

“The Association’s Board will evaluate entry level for all practitioners to be involved and set the parameters that are required to develop the sector and practitioners’ skills.

TurfPro editior Laurence Gale added, “As a founder member of the Association, it is wonderful to see that we now have an organisation that can represent parks professionals. “

Purpose of The Association – its aims and defined roles

  • To promote the role of well-trained, qualified and suitably experienced parks practitioners’ at every level within parks management, maintenance and development;
  • To celebrate the central role quality and well-run parks play in our neighbourhoods for all sections of our communities and raise their value regionally and nationally;
  • To recognise and endorse the contribution of quality parks and open spaces to healthy lifestyles and physical and mental wellbeing;
  • Promote and endorse best management principles and practices and play a role in facilitating roll out among practitioners’;
  • To embed the effective role parks and open spaces have as green infrastructure, natural capital and ecosystem services, endorsing sustainable development and protection;
  • To lobby for long-term resources for ongoing maintenance, management and development and play a role in finding solutions with government and relevant organisations – “one voice – one lobby”;
  • To encourage and enable community involvement and empowerment of local people and park users;
  • To collaborate with similar minded organisations to achieve its aims; and
  • Specifically, to be THE representative body for those professionals working in the parks and green spaces sector.

Laurence Gale continued, “We have all seen the value our parks and public open spaces have brought to the table during this terrible pandemic. They have been a lifeline for so many people who live and work in our cities.

“We have been saying for years the importance of parks, but in the past our voices were not heard. This organisation is full of top park professionals who now can come together under this umbrella and finally have a strong voice to persuade government to start funding these assets properly and find a way to ensure the future of these facilities.”

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