A friends group is a group of local residents and other interested parties who dedicate their time and knowledge to improve their local park or open space.
Anyone can join a friends group; you don't need to live in the immediate area to be a member.
What do friends groups do?
Friends groups help us by giving us a valuable insight into the needs and aspirations of the local community. They can help gain funding for restoration and conservation projects and can give opinions on proposed plans for the parks and open spaces.
Many friends groups run their own events and they often plan work parties to carry out clean-ups and conservation work.
Where is my nearest friends group?
The Friends of Eastwood Park group was formed to encourage the use of Eastwood Park as a public leisure and recreation facility.
This aim was drawn directly from the deeds when the park was given to the people of Chesterfield by Alderman Eastwood, in memory of his late father.
Find out more on their website www.friendsofeastwoodpark.org.uk
The Holmebrook Valley Park friends group was set up to enhance the experience of park users and to promote the park to others.
They have obtained funding for new seats in the park and to resurface two major pathways. A group of volunteers from The Friends Group renovated the sensory garden and supported the opening of a cafe in the park.
The Friends of Holmebrook Valley Park meet from time to time and new members are very welcome. For more information please visit www.holmebrookvalleypark.org.uk
Friends of the Inkerman is a community group promoting the use of the Inkerman Park in Chesterfield, Derbyshire.
They organise the annual Inkerman Buzz and other events in the park, and meet four times a year.
For more information, please visit www.friendsoftheinkerman.org.
The Friends of Monkey Park was set up to help improve the facilities in Chester Street Park.
Their aims are to raise money to replace the play equipment, install benches for community use and to work with Chesterfield Borough Council, the police and the community to reduce key issues such as littering, dog fouling and antisocial behaviour;
We look forward to working with you to improve the facilities in the park.
Pevensey Green is situated in the middle of a housing development in Newbold. Officially designated as an 'amenity area', it is approximately the size of a football pitch and is surrounded on all four sides by roads, houses and flats.
The group Friends of Pevensey Green was formed in 2005 to convert an area of ravaged and muddy grass into a beautiful area for everyone to enjoy, while safeguarding the wellbeing of the residents living in its immediate vicinity.
The area has since been transformed:
- money was raised to install a path for pedestrians to cross the green diagonally
- members of the group planted trees, shrubs and flowers
- a dedicated trio mowed the grass and continue to do so.
Insurance and fuel for the lawn mowers is covered by fundraising and donations from supporters, some of whom for health reasons, cannot be actively involved.
Volunteers adopt one or more trees, surrounding them with winter and summer plants of their own choice and at their own expense.
In 2006 and 2007 the Friends of Pevensey Green entered the Neighbourhood Section of the East Midlands in Bloom competition, obtaining a credit in their first attempt and a Highly Commended, the highest award in the following year. Also in 2007, Chesterfield Borough Council presented a Certificate of Commendation and donated a Mountain Ash tree to plant on the Green.
In 2008 the Friends of Pevensey Green were asked to take part in Chesterfield's entry for the Britain in Bloom competition. The judges presented them with a Special Judges Award. The group were also asked to participate in Chesterfield's entry in 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013. A Derbyshire Excellence in the Community Award was presented in 2011.
The Friends of Queen's Park are a constituted voluntary group that aims to work solely or with partners to preserve, promote and protect the heritage of Queen’s Park.
The management committee will work to achieve this by:
- helping inform the local community about issues / happenings in the park
- providing representation at user groups
- being actively involved in the delivery of future programmes within the park and the organisation, running and/or assistance of events
- being actively involved in the detail and delivery of future development in the park
- obtaining funding to aid implementation of supplementary work, such as artwork
- positively promoting the park through publicity, newsletters and lectures, etc.
Find out more at www.friendsofqueenspark.info.
The park friends are a group of volunteers who have come together to work with, and on behalf of, the community of park users to improve Stand Road Park park.
They want to transform it into a community park that will be safe and enjoyable for everyone.
Find out more at www.facebook.com/standroadpark
The Friends of Whitecotes Playing Field was set up with a view to improving the amenities of Whitecotes Playing Field at Boythorpe to include access for all and the protection of the environment for wildlife.
Their aims are especially to provide better play equipment, paths and seats to ensure this green space continues to be utilised by the local community and promoting their health and well-being.
For the latest updates and information please visit www.whitecotesplayingfield.co.uk
Setting up your own friends group
You might wish to set up your own friends group. This could be because you would like to protect a natural area, increase public awareness of a park or open space, carry out environmental clean-ups or run events.
If you would like to start a friends group, please contact us:
Please get in touch with any suggestions, comments or ways you could help us: