Parks to receive extra £500,000 to cover improvement costs

Haringey Council had a target income of £245,000 for the year, but managed to raise a total of £766,000 after securing an increased number of bookings for park hire.

Haringey Council had a target income of £245,000 for the year, but managed to raise a total of £766,000 after securing an increased number of bookings for park hire.

First published in News
Last updated
by , Reporter

  Parks will receive an extra £500,000 after the council made three times more money from events than it expected.

Haringey Council had a target income of £245,000 for the year, but managed to raise a total of £766,000 after receiving an increased number of bookings for park hire.

The council was also able to raise the amount it charged organisers for hiring parks such as Finsbury Park, which hosted the Wireless Festival last month.

Chairman of the Friends of Down Lane Park Martin Ball called for park users to be involved in deciding how the money was spent.

He said: “That is half a million above target that the council will reinvest in the parks service, leading to the question of what it will be spent on. This significant investment opportunity is of importance to residents.

“Many parks and green spaces require improvement and it is important that local people and friends of parks groups are involved in discussions on where the money is spent, rather than the council decide to do what it believes it is best.”

The figures were revealed after Mr Ball submitted a Freedom of Information request to the council about the amount of income received this year, after controversial plans to increase the number of concert days at Finsbury Park were passed in January.

Mr Ball questioned whether the extra money justified the impact on park users in raising it.

He added: “There is also a wider question of whether the income justifies the damage caused to Finsbury Park - 'a necessary evil' - and whether the council will become hooked on this commercialisation as a long-term income stream. That has implications for Finsbury Park and every park in the borough.”

All money raised will be spent on maintenance and upkeep, as well as projects including introducing new lighting and improving the sports area and children’s playground in Finsbury Park.

Improvements will also be made to Priory Park and Muswell Hill Playing Fields, along with clearing an empty pavilion in Chestnuts Park to make way for better facilities.

A Haringey Council spokesman said: “All of the money generated by park events goes back into the parks, paying for maintenance work to keep them in the best shape and ensuring that they offer plenty of modern facilities.

“Haringey has the fifth highest number of green flag parks in the country, meaning we are among the best when it comes to offering the highest standard of maintenance and facilities. This funding ensures that we are able to continue making our parks pleasant places for our residents to relax and spend time in.”

Comments (1)

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3:25pm Wed 13 Aug 14

Michelle vonAhn says...

Does this mean that the sadly neglected allotments will finally receive some investment? They have, over the last 2 decades, had their share of the Parks and Recreation budget shifted to support Parks and now have very derelict roads, paths and fencing.
Does this mean that the sadly neglected allotments will finally receive some investment? They have, over the last 2 decades, had their share of the Parks and Recreation budget shifted to support Parks and now have very derelict roads, paths and fencing. Michelle vonAhn
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