The Green Space Index
We first got involved with Fields in Trust in the run up to the publication of OS Open Greenspace, our dataset of greenspaces in urban and rural areas and including parks, playing fields and sports grounds.
Fields in Trust is an independent charity that champions and supports parks and green spaces in the UK by protecting them for people to enjoy endlessly.
The Green Space Index has enabled Fields in Trust to take stock and analyse publicly accessible local park and green space provision within Great Britain (around 216,000 ha) for the first time. It has been created to support their evidence-led approach calling for parks and green spaces to be revalued for the benefits they contribute to society and protected for future generations to enjoy.
So, just how much publicly available local park and green space provision is there across Great Britain?
Finally, the Green Space Index can offer an answer to this question. It tells us that there are 2.6 million people who don’t live within a ten-minute walk of a park or green space and that across Great Britain, there is around 35 square metres of publicly accessible park and green space provision per person – less than half the size of a six-yard box on a football pitch.
In London for example, only 10,579 people don’t have a park within a ten-minute walk of where they live compared to just under 2.6 million across Britain. However, Londoners have just 20.98 square metres of provision per person – almost half the national average. The capital also falls well short of a minimum standard as measured by Fields in Trust’s GSI Score.
The Green Space Index is compiled using the OS Open Greenspace product, with the May 2019 release of the GSI using the April 2019 release of OS Open Greenspace.
Within the OS Open Greenspace product, the site extent polygons are used in all cases. From the site extent layer four typologies are excluded which are not deemed to be within scope of the Green Space Index. The excluded typologies are allotments & community growing spaces, cemetery, religious grounds and golf course.
For further details, have a read of Fields in Trust’s Technical Notes.
Summer of Parks
Between now and mid-September, Fields in Trust will be celebrating everything that we all love about our local parks and green spaces as well as leading discussions on the issues affecting parks.
With plenty of ways to get involved, we particularly like their Have a Field Day on 6 July (already open for sign ups) which aims to get people outside to enjoy a picnic at their local park or green space.