Parks for Health Strategy

February 9, 2022

Clients: London Boroughs of Camden and Islington

“Catherine joined Parks for Health at an important juncture of our development and this transformed the project into the class-leading piece of work it has become.” Head of Green Spaces, London Borough of Camden.

Catherine worked closely with the public health and parks teams to develop a joint Parks for Health strategy for two inner London councils which reimagines urban green space as 21st century public health assets. The strategy comprises workforce transformation, partnership with local NHS, social care and community stakeholders, and an approach to the public realm as a whole which prioritises wellbeing and tackling health inequalities.

“A clear, purposeful and targeted parks and urban greening strategy which is brimming with innovative ways to utilise parks and green spaces for health outcomes.” MJ Awards Finalists Brochure 2023.

In parallel, Catherine also worked with Shared Assets to expand and diversify how Camden and Islington’s parks are used and maintained by different groups, supporting council teams and the local voluntary and community sector to collaborate in innovative ways for better health outcomes. With Third Sector Mission Control, she  provided additional advice on future funding and business development opportunities. Currently, she is collaborating with Liza Griffin and Gemma Moore of UCL’s Bartlett School to test and expand the reach of a new Healthy Parks Framework for planning, designing and managing green public spaces. This includes convening a cross-sector knowledge exchange network and developing an online Healthy Parks and Green Space platform.

“Catherine has an excellent approach to working with people from a range of backgrounds, progressing conceptual aspirations into clear and practical collective next steps/plans. She is persistent with a keen eye on the end result. Catherine is great to work with and we’ve really benefitted from her passionate interest in the subject area as well.” Assistant Director of Public Health, Camden and Islington

Watch Catherine and Barry Emmerson, Islington’s Head of Parks, speaking at the UK Green Infrastructure Partnership conference (2022): Green Infrastructure Partnership Conference: A New Era for Green Infrastructure? Session 3 – YouTube.

Parks for Health began as a test site funded by the national Future Parks Accelerator initiative. Camden and Islington’s ongoing success embedding health in a greener public realm was “highly commended” in the MJ Awards 2023 Delivering Better Outcomes category.


"Catherine provided absolutely crucial insight and challenge to ensure the Parks for Health Strategy brought our vision to life. She guided us through some difficult and challenging periods to help keep the project focussed and on track and was absolutely critical to our success. She became an essential and integrated part of the team (not just a consultant) and this was down to Catherine’s engaging skills and passionate approach. We are indebted to her."