May 26, 2018

Ecoscape UK

London will become the world’s first National Park City


A campaign to make London the world’s first National Park City has been successful.

Over the last few years, campaigners have publicised the fact that London is one of the greenest cities in Europe. By setting up events, getting themselves in the media, and connecting Londoners to the natural world around them, they have achieved their goal.

Gradually, people started to join the bid – Sadiq Khan, and members of the London Assembly lent their support. And now the majority of council wards, 53 % of the capital, have backed the idea.

Campaigners will now work with the Mayor to attempt to declare National Park status in 2019.

So why will London become a National Park City? 

The campaign website explains it best:

More than 80% of the UK’s population live in towns and cities. These urban areas now cover 7% of the UK and 10% of England. Think of urban landscapes and what comes to mind are industrial sites, houses, roads and rail lines. But in reality it is a richly woven tapestry of greens and blues made up of gardens, rivers, parks, woodland, nature reserves, canals, meadows, woodland, allotments, streams and lakes.  
 Together with our buildings, these green and blue parts of our cities can be made more valuable, wild and diverse than large parts of our countryside. They can be just as outstanding for their outdoor recreation opportunities and are certainly more accessible. So, why not apply National Park principles to a major city – such as London? London is one of the world’s most inspirational, distinctive and iconic cities. Thousands of years of human activity is visible – but London is shaped by its hills, valleys and rivers, too. Boasting four World Heritage Sites, London’s urban and built heritage sits alongside its conserved natural landscape.
 Besides 8.6 million people, London is home to more than 8.3 million trees and 14,000 species of wildlife.Let’s think of London not just as a political, cultural and financial centre, but as an ecological centre too.”
FutureArch Coverage
As recently as our December/January issue, we asked whether London would benefit from becoming a National Park City – the support was overwhelming – see for yourself here:

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