The charity has awarded five-year service contracts to idverde for the following parks:
- Hyde Park
- Kensington Gardens and Brompton Cemetery (Kensington Gardens and Brompton Cemetery come under one contract),
- Greenwich Park,
- Bushy Park,
- St James’s & The Green Parks (under one contract).
At Richmond Park, Gavin Jones Ltd will continue to support The Royal Parks over the next 12 months throughout the transition to insource the direct management of the workforce in August 2023, bringing key skills into the charity to increase our resilience.
All five-year contracts come with the possibility of a two-year extension. An existing contract with idverde is already in place for The Regent’s Park.
The Royal Parks will continue to deliver the highest horticultural standards through these contracts. The contracts will also seek to increase community engagement by developing horticultural volunteering across these iconic parks.
The contracts will see a new landscape maintenance structure implemented through the appointment of a Royal Parks’ head gardener in each of the parks, including Brompton Cemetery. The head gardeners will directly instruct a team of contract gardeners. They will also be responsible for engaging the communities around their parks. This will oversee the recruitment of volunteers to provide additional support to the growing gardening teams and provide the capacity for gardening teams to carry out additional tasks at the highest level, over and above the delivery of current services.
All contracts will guarantee all contract staff a minimum salary of London Living Wage and existing staff from current contracts will be protected under the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) legislation.
The new contracts will prioritise sustainability, for example the continued roll out of an electric fleet, green waste recycling and waste management. Service delivery will ensure a greater emphasis on protecting a biodiversity. The new contracts have included updated approaches to incorporate current industry standards and good practice.
The Royal Parks’ Director of Parks, Tom Jarvis, said: “We’re delighted that we will be working with our contractors to deliver excellence in the quality of care we provide for these beautiful iconic green spaces, which are enjoyed by more than 77 million visitors each year. These wonderful landscapes range from the formal grandeur of Kensington Gardens to the ancient oaks and roaming deer of Richmond Park.
“They provide a space for rest, relaxation and discovery of the natural world and heritage, allowing local communities to enjoy engaging with the environment on their doorstep - as well as providing a welcome to visitors from further afield.
“With climate change a key issue for all, it has never been more important to look after and respect our environment. Through these contracts we will continue to protect these green spaces for the future.”