The vision for Preston's parks and green spaces is:
To provide high quality, sustainable green spaces which are safe, enjoyable, and accessible for all.
Preston is proud of its accessible network of good quality parks and green spaces. With input from staff, volunteers, Friends groups and other partners, these parks and green spaces will be supported to provide a wide range of positive inclusive activities, supporting good health, improved life chances and an excellent quality of life, for everyone who lives in or visits the City.
There is compelling evidence, based on feedback from stakeholders, communities and Friends groups, of how highly local people and visitors value Preston's parks and green spaces. As a strategic North West city, well connected to the rest of the region and with integrated sustainable transport links, Preston is superbly placed to have an effective, good quality parks and open spaces network.
This Strategy and its vision align with the Council's vision as set out in its wider Corporate Plan which sees Preston as a growing vibrant city in the North West. It highlights that such a vision can only be achieved in partnership with all stakeholders in the City.
Three priority areas are set out in order to help achieve the Council's objectives for the City and the Council as an organisation:
Securing investment to improve the assets and infrastructure Your City and create high quality jobs*.
Delivering well run, value for money services, valued by the public; demonstrating good governance, openness and transparency and a strong democratic process.
Fairness for residents
Fairness at the head of our decision making. Building an economy which supports prosperity and promotes fairness in working lives and practices. Accessibility to affordable energy and decent affordable living.
* - We are in the process of developing a 15 year City Investment Plan which will set out our vision, objectives and strategy to transform Preston, targeting resources and aligning public and private sector investments to respond to needs and capitalise on opportunities for positive change.
We want to maintain the momentum of change in our city to make sure the richness of life is within reach for the people of Preston.
Our long-term strategy is centred on investment priorities to support our people and is focused on sustainable and shared prosperity for our communities. At a time when the COVID-19 crisis is deeply affecting our residents and businesses, our long-term strategy will make a significant contribution to our recovery.
The Strategy Objectives
Based on the Corporate Vision, Preston City Council has agreed a number of ambitions (presented below) upon which it intends to focus during the lifetime of this Strategy.
From these, a series of objectives are formed. These ambitions are to:
- Preserve and protect Preston's parks, local nature reserves, allotments and green spaces through a management programme which applies to all key sites. Programme elements will be specific to the respective sites, and address issues such as access, drainage, signage, grass cutting and play equipment.
- Continually look to add value to all parks and green spaces, via delivery of schemes identified in site masterplans.
- Deliver the recommendations within the Central Lancashire Playing Pitch, Open Spaces Strategy for Preston and Preston's Local Football Facilities Plan.
- Ensure that parks and green spaces are accessible to all, where practicable, and that where possible, green networks are in place to provide sustainable connectivity between sites.
- Retain and expand Green Flag Award status at all key sites across the City to maintain high standards. Green Flag awards are only awarded after an independent judges inspection of a site.
- Work with partners to provide a wide range of opportunities to continue to drive up site visitor numbers.
- Increase active participation levels across all sites by maintaining and creating opportunities to be involved in sport and physical activity.
- Develop innovative technology to increase visitor numbers across all key sites.
- Make sure that Preston's parks and green spaces, and their maintenance, make a positive contribution to the Climate Change Agenda. This includes the development and implementation of a tree strategy.
- Work with stakeholders, partners, funders and community organisations, through specially tailored programmes, to address mental health issues, upskill local communities and improve social capital.
- Engage with local communities to increase awareness of parks and green spaces and recruit more volunteers to help support the management and maintenance of key locations.
- Continue to ensure parks provide lifelong learning opportunity and the chance to develop new skills/life chances.
- Continue to identify funding sources to ensure all parks and green spaces remain attractive and accessible places to visit.
- Manage, maintain and further develop the City's play provision