During Lockdown spending time outside in parks kept many of us sane. From 23 July – 1 August, Love Parks Week is a nationwide campaign to celebrate these beloved natural resources. Central London alone has a whopping eight royal parks so there’s no shortage of green space to enjoy.
Whether you’re exercising, socialising or walking the dog, parks provide spaces to meet with others and just enjoy being outside. In short, spending time in nature equals improved health and wellbeing.
In recognition of this, Love Parks Week is dedicated to promoting the power of our parks and aims to encourage us to enjoy spending time in our favourite green space. Parks are particularly vital in cities such as London, where many people live in flats or housing without gardens. It’s also a chance to appreciate London’s wildlife, beautifully designed gardens and eat al fresco with plenty of space for summer picnics.
Central London's largest green space, Hyde Park sprawls across grass and trees with the L-shaped Serpentine perfect for cooling off in the summer heat. Aside from hosting live events, it’s also home to the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fountain and you can even hire a deck chair to sit in take it all in from.
One of the capital's loveliest green spaces, former royal hunting ground Regent’s Park comprises London Zoo, Regent’s Canal as well as Open Air Theatre productions, from Romeo & Juliet to Carousel. People love to hang out on the pretty bandstand, beside the Boating Lake, when it’s not being used for concerts.
St James’s is a smaller park, but it’s perfectly formed, with manicured lawns and flower-filled gardens and a lake filled with ducks, geese and pelicans. It’s also close to some major London landmarks from Buckingham Palace to The Mall.
The theme for this year’s Keep Britain Tidy initiative is Love, Respect, and Protect. I think you know why – during the first lockdown they reported local authorities collected, on average, an extra 57 tonnes of litter including face masks and drinks bottles. Plastic can also harm animals, when they swallow or become trapped by it.
So, as summer blooms, it’s time to see what your local authority is hosting using the #LoveParks hashtag on social media.
What’s your favourite park in London?
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