How to Set Up a Park Group

Toolkits & Guides

We have created a handy guide to take you through all the steps for creating, planning and funding projects - Projects in parks: making it happen.

This guide also outlines how to set up a group to make this happen, including Friends of the Park groups and more complex structures.

If you’re looking for ideas and to see what types of projects are possible: from improving biodiversity, supporting health and well-being, to creating social enterprise - we have some inspiring case studies for you. Take a look at our guide Projects in parks: possibilities and case studies.

"Friends of" groups are traditionally the most common groups associated with parks. In the past their roles have included:

  • Being the ‘eyes and ears’ on the ground to promote positive behaviour in the park
  • Fundraising for improvements
  • Working with the parks team to carry out conservation tasks, planting and or adding planting and maintaining some beds/areas of the park
  • Holding the local authority or contractors to account for quality
  • Acting as advocates for park users, campaigning for improvements
  • Organising events, activities or volunteering days for residents to interact in the park.

In recent years some of these roles have been extended, and other roles have been taken on as you can see in many examples in the ‘Projects in parks – possibilities and case studies’ toolkit. 

See more about why and how you can set up a “Friends of” group here and with these how to guides.  You can also look to local groups for inspiration, see Friends of Horsenden Hill for an Ealing based example.