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Bristol Parks Forum Update

In this update: 

BPF October Meeting

Our next meeting 9.30am to 12.30pm on Saturday 19th October 2019 will be held  Greenway Centre, Southmead (Raleigh Room)

Vision, possible Forum position statements

In June (update No 255) we asked for comments on our proposed position statements which came out of the Vision.
The proposal is for a limited number of statements so that we don’t get bogged down by producing lots of them.
  • What do you think of the list – does it cover the right range of subjects?
  • Any comments on the details?
  • Are you willing to help write one or more of them?
Define “excellent”
Could use the criteria used to make Green Flag award 
Standards of design for cycleways / walking infrastructure
The role of context/character of the green space.
The role of the purpose/function of the green space
Indicative design standards – 3m width for xxxxxx
Inappropriate development
Define within the context/character of the green space
Define within the purpose and function of green space
Sustainable management of Parks
Describe and look forward – especially in the light of funding cuts – climate emergency – biodiversity crisis etc.
Free to access/charging for activities/ inappropriate use
Define within the context of the green space
Define within the purpose and function of green space
Bristol Equality Charter
Covers everyone, including Women, Disabled, BAME, LBTQI+ etc. Forum and individual groups to sign up.
If you haven’t responded already – please respond by Friday 16th August.

Vision, Statutory Duty for Parks

The Committee wrote in mid-July to the SofS for DEFRA in line with our new Vision, about using the Environment Act to get a statutory duty on Public Bodies to maintain Parks and Green Spaces.
Cllr Asher Craig was copied in – and replied positively about the idea and commented on the invaluable work that volunteers do.
The letter and Cllr Craig’s reply can be seen here:

Opportunity for Park Groups: Gardening course

I wanted to let you know about a great opportunity we have set up courtesy of RHS and their lovely community outreach advisor, Susan.
Susan is offering a block of 6 free gardening skills sessions, starting 19th September and continuing over the autumn (some fortnightly and a few with a larger gap in between), finishing on 28th November.
Each session is on a Thursday from 1-3pm, held at Ashton Court where we have access to both a variety of gardens and warm spaces in case of wet weather.
If this course would be of interest to you or any of your fellow parks volunteers, please use the following link to book on:
Places on this course are limited and we are hoping that those who book on will attend each of the 6 sessions. Please consider this when you book on, or let me know if there is a specific session you would like to attend and we can try to accommodate this.
Let me know if you have any questions – details about the training focus at each session can be found on the Eventbrite page.
Hope this is useful to some of you!
Best wishes,
Ella Hogg
Volunteer Coordinator Bristol Parks


More H&S training dates

We have two H&S training dates set up for the Autumn
10th September:
5th October:
Please pass these links on to anyone who might benefit from the training.
I am also setting up scything training on Thursday 26th Sept (5.15 – 6.45pm) and Saturday 12th October (10am – 12pm). The first session will be at Royate Hill. The second location is tbc. If you know of anyone who would like to take part in this, please pass them in my direction and I will send them the booking link as soon as I have it sorted.
FYI, Joe McKenna is undergoing some NVQ trainer training which will allow him to begin to deliver battery operated power tool training going forward. This will likely be up and running fir the end of Sept/early October, depending on how quickly he can get trained.
Best wishes,
Ella Hogg
Volunteer Coordinator Bristol Parks
Note: A link to all planned training dates and to the form where you can apply for training can be found on the Parks Forum website at

Parks Groups across the UK

In the March 2019 minutes here  of the National Parks and Green Spaces Federation, there are short statements from a number of Forums and Parks Groups across the UK.
It makes an interesting read – and confirms that we are not alone in dealing with the issues we have.

You might also be interested in a new website that is being developed support Friends' groups across the country as part of the Rethinking Parks Project.
The website aims to be a ‘one stop shop’ of information for the Friends Groups movement. Once developed it will be transferred to be run by the National Federation of Parks and Green Spaces.   


Bristol City Council Pinpoint

A reminder that The City Council has a digital mapping resource on-line which can show you information about parks and green spaces, including environmental designations and features such as protected trees and benches in parks.
This is one of my favourite things about Bristol!

National Lottery Heritage Fund

As mentioned previously the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) now operates under a new name with new branding and new criteria for grants.
In addition to the obvious link with Heritage of the new NLHF criteria – there are other criteria that can be considered for funding such as wildlife/biodiversity and communities.
See    for details.

Can Do Bristol, Revamped & Live!

We have mentioned Can Do Bristol at our meetings in the past and the fact that it is being improved. This could be a solution to getting park volunteering opportunities across the city shown in one place.
The new, updated version of Can Do Bristol went live at the beginning of July 2019.
It has been hugely improved with exciting updates to improve members browsing experience and provide new features (find out more in section 2 below).
If you haven’t already…
We are inviting you to try out these new features and start connecting with the growing Can Do community:
1)         If you are one of the 900+ existing members that were transferred over from the old version then we invite you to:
  • Sign in
  • Update your profile and password
  • Set up your ‘best match’ preferences.
Find password update help here:
2)         Signing up for the first time?
  • Go to
    • If you agree to the new member statements, check the boxes to continue
  • Choose a user name, the email address you want your account to link to and a password.
  • Identify the type of account you are setting up (Individual, Community Group, Organisation)
  • Create your profile so others find out more about you, your organisation or group
  • Set up your Best Match – this will help you find activities and members that are most interesting you.
  • Set your profile privacy to public so other members can see what you are interested in
Start to connect, promote volunteer opportunities, ask for ideas!!!
Find out more here:
Please note:
Around 50 new members have joined CDB since it went live! However, we are still refining the website and are aiming for an official re-launch after the summer complete with a new logo. There is likely to be some other changes to the overall look too.
Provisional date for re- launch: Week beginning 30th September 2019.
We would love to get as many new volunteering opportunities, and questions on the site as possible over the next 2 months but also to hear your feedback on using the platform.
For any questions or more information / help please contact:
Section 2:
So what’s new?
1)     Volunteering updates
            •          Groups and organisations can now post, promote and manage their own volunteering opportunities,
            •          Your member profile will keep a record of the hours you have spent volunteering,
            •          The ‘Best Match’ button helps you quickly find volunteering opportunities that match your interests and location.
You can find out more about changes to posting volunteering opportunities here:
2) Community conversations
            •          You can now ask the community for ideas, and view reports on the most popular ideas.
            •          You can get involved in community conversations, add ideas or rate the ideas of others.
3)     Project team spaces
            •          You can start (and invite others to join) a community project team space.
            •          Within a team space, you can set up a chatrooms, share documents and assign tasks to volunteers.
Best regards
And with thanks for helping make good things happen in Bristol.
BCC Community Resources Team & Made Open
Rob Acton-Campbell
Bristol Parks Forum
Next Parks Forum meeting 19th October, Greenway Centre, Southmead (Raleigh Room)

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