Interview with Tony Leach, CEO, Parks for London

March 23, 2018

Can you tell us more about the charity?

At Parks for London, we love London’s parks and green spaces, and work with the people that manage, maintain and enjoy them, to keep them thriving, accessible, safe and beautiful spaces.

Our vision is a London that is a healthy and sustainable world city; a place where parks and green spaces make a major contribution to the health and wellbeing of Londoners and to the environment in which they live and work.

Our mission is to ensure that London has a strong network of parks and green spaces. These should be of a high quality, safe, accessible and stimulating. For more information please visit

We advise and support landowners by sharing good practice through our network of supporters. Not many people realise that London’s parks and green spaces are managed by 33 Boroughs plus at least ten other organisations, many of which operate independently. Much of our work saves reinventing the wheel! We also work with local Councillors and over 600 friend’s groups giving us access to top down and grass root interests – excuse the pun!

We’re a small charity with a turnover of around £100k employing 1.5 staff yet we must comply with Charity Commission and Companies House requirements like any other charity/business. So, behind the scenes we need to have good governance supported by a team of ten skilled and
dedicated trustees.

How has the Frazer Jones Volunteer Network supported Parks for London?
Jo from Frazer Jones contacted us just when our trustee with HR skills had resigned for personal reasons. Quick as a flash she connected us to a number of potential candidates. Shortlisting and interviews led us to appoint Kate Brown in September 2017.

We value the help that we receive from all our trustees and through Kate we can get advice on working with interns, volunteers, as well as the usual HR knowhow needed for employing staff. More than that, we benefit from her passion for London’s parks. Thanks to her and Frazer Jones HR Volunteer Network initiative we’ve been able to maintain continuity in the Boardroom, which to a small charity like ours, means a lot. We can now plan for growth and new projects.

What would enable the charity to do more?
Like all charities we could always do more if we had more resources but these austere times make it doubly difficult to attract new funders so we are grateful for the growing number of companies that are providing pro-bono staff time for projects and the use of premises for meetings and events.

Contact Tony Leach if you want to know more