Skip to content

National Park Funding

Tomo Thompson
By Tomo Thompson
2nd March 2023


Whilst we welcome the financial support (announced yesterday – 1 March 2023) from @defrauk to England’s National Parks, forgive us for not getting aboard the celebration bus.

The money (£4.4 million of grants) described as a ‘benefit’ to the Parks, is earmarked to support the very services (visitor centres and park rangers) that the National Parks have had to reduce or close due to the impact of cuts over the last decade. Real term funding cuts in excess of 40% are not magically undone by this money.

It’s now 3.5 years since the ‘Landscapes Review’ was published and clearly articulated the critical requirement for national landscapes to be appropriately resourced and managed for the benefit of everyone. Hardly any of the recommendations of that Review have been taken forward.

As John Dower wrote (in 1945) “if National Parks are provided for the nation they should clearly be provided for by the nation”.
The Landscapes Review called for ‘existing budgets for National Parks to be secured in real terms and sustained for a further five year period’. That hasn’t happened.

We remain resolute in our work with the Campaign for National Parks and other organisations in calling for sustainable and enduring funding from government for Protected Landscapes rather than ongoing cuts interspersed by much publicised injections of relatively small amounts of emergency cash.

You cannot amputate a limb and then put a sticking plaster on it and claim to be its saviour.