Summary of Greater Bedminster’s Progress on the Bristol Area Green Space Strategy

June 2016. This document offers information to aid discussion on GBCP’s strategic approach to the development of Parks and Green Spaces.

The GBCP Board is requested to

  • Note the report;
  • Invite park groups and others to prepare proposals for park improvement in line with the Parks and Open Spaces Strategy by April 30 2013;
  • Consider the 3 key issues set out below.
  1. around £100,000 of 106 money for green spaces has been identified for allocation in 2013, where should we spend it?
  2. should our emphasis be on promoting wildlife; securing improved children’s play; enhancing the infrastructure and design of formal parks or something else? Can some of these be combined?
  3. can we use the 106 money to leaver in other resources from, say, the lottery or land fill tax?

The Green Spaces: Work on the Bristol Strategy started in 2005 and it was adopted in 2008. It’s a ‘spatial and investment plan for the next 20 years’, ie 2006-2026. The Bedminster and Southville section, adopted after consultations in 2010, identified 14 sites that are the responsibility of BCC Parks, although there may be others, eg Windmill Hill City Farm, Hebron Burial Ground, Marksbury Community Garden, Ashton Vale Town Green, not ‘owned’ by Parks.

The BCC sites and BCC names are

  • Greville Smyth Park
  • South Street Park
  • Land at Dalby Ave
  • Land at Francis Road
  • New Cut Open Space
  • Gores Marsh Park
  • St Johns Churchyard
  • North Street Green
  • St Pauls Churchyard
  • Ashton Court
  • Dame Emily Park
  • Ashton Vale Playing Field
  • ‘Sturdon Road’
  • ‘Cumberland Road’

Additionally, important spaces easily accessed from Greater Bedminster, but in Windmill Hill ward include

  • Victoria Park
  • Malago Vale OS
  • ‘Cotswold Road’

Funding and development of these spaces is the responsibility of Knowle, Filwood and Windmill Hill Neighbourhood Partnership.

Some of our local sites are quite small and will not be dealt with here, although their importance should not be under estimated as they are part of the walking environment and also significant as part of wildlife corridors. We’ll also not be commenting much on Ashton Court Estate, except as a wildlife reservoir.

The Criteria: BCC introduced quality, quantity and distance criteria relating to different types of green space. The types are play opportunities for children and young people; formal green space; informal green space, natural green space and active sports space. Of course, these are not always easy to distinguish from each other. The aim of the strategy is that by 2026 all Bristol residents will be within various set distances of each type of green space and that this provision will be of an acceptable quantity and quality. Full details of the original Strategy can be seen on the BCC website: https://www.bristol.gov.uk/policies-plans-strategies/bristol-parks-and-green-space-strategy

What’s the purpose of this summary? The GBCP Board has asked for an assessment of progress over the last few years towards the goals set out in the original Strategy. We know that some spaces have moved forward considerably, whilst others remain ‘unimproved’. Of course, in some cases, ‘improvement’ might be a bad thing. The data will help GBCP to decide where further investment should be encouraged. This investment might come from BCC or externally. In both cases, a more convincing case can be made to the funder if applications are shown to be in line with a longer-term plan.

The full report is attached here: GBCP green spaces report 2017

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