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Lights Shining Through the Gloom!

Long grass regime, Pope's Meadow, Bracknell

In the midst of all the gloom surrounding the green space sector due to the demoralising deep budget cuts, there are some lights glowing through the darkness.

  • A new magazine for the sector, Professional Horticulture is due to be launched in the next few weeks. There are many great mags out there, Horticulture Week, Pitchcare, Pro Landscaper amongst others, but none have been focused largely on the green spaces sector since the demise of Greenspace with its excellent Spaces and Places magazine.

  • I am currently writing a series of articles for this new mag, and the editor, Laurence Gale, is looking for good topics or stories. Please get in touch if you have a story we could write up or there is an issue we can report on, or if you wish to send us an article you have written yourself. One of the main purposes of the mag is to champion, promote and defend parks and open spaces. I wish Laurence and his team every success and I hope all those who work in the sector will give the magazine their support. Parks and open spaces need their profile raising, and at last we have a magazine that will provide the industry with its own voice. This magazine deserves all our support. The first issue is due to come out in March. A promotional copy was published recently and can be viewed at -

I will add any article to my blog, following its publication

  • The Association of Public Service Excellence (APSE) have an excellent line-up of speakers for their Parks, Open Spaces and Horticultural Services seminar at Tatton Park on the 14th March 2016, including latest advice from the Heritage Lottery fund on rethinking parks and Richard Auton , Director at Walker Morris on the legalities on generating income through services etc. See full programme on link below.


I am giving a presentation at the APSE Parks Advisory Forum at Manchester Central Library at 10.00 am on Tuesday 9th February 2016. The topic is about specifying services for biodiversity in an austerity era. Again, I will post the presentation following the event.

See the full programme below:

  • The Parks Alliance have met again and are now asking for people to join. I will post how this can be done as soon as I know and have received a reply. They are just getting established with few resources other than good people with lots of enthusiasm so we will have to bear with them and give as much support as we can. I’m sure their website will keep you up-to-date. (See links)

  • The RHS are about to start work on their fifth major garden at the site of Worsley New Hall in Salford. Tom Stuart-Smith is leading the design/construction work. I'm look forward to seeing it taking shape. Let’s hope there will be some access to see its formative stages!

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