The City of Edinburgh Council is the lead partner of the Thriving Green Spaces Project partnership which is made up of six bodies.
The project team sit within the Council’s Parks and Greenspace staff group in Neighbourhood Environmental Services. They are part of the multi-disciplinary group who care for and develop all Council owned greenspaces.
From allotments to the Pentland Hills Regional Park to our Zero Carbon park at Saughton, our Parks and Greenspace staff deliver all the services required to keep Edinburgh green and thriving.
All of the project partners are committed to ensuring that we have quality, thriving parks and green spaces which benefit people and nature. Together they bring a broad range of skills and expertise in greenspace management, planning and operations to the project.
Our project partners
greenspace scotland provides a national lead on greenspace. Their goal is that each of us living and working in urban Scotland has easy access to good greenspace which meets local needs and improves quality of life. As Scotland’s parks and greenspace charity they shape a supportive policy context for greenspace. They promote good practice on delivery.
ELGT know that quality local greenspaces have a positive impact on the health and well-being of people. They run an inspired and imaginative programme of green community projects. This enables them to work for the benefit of people, wildlife, landscape and heritage.
The University of Edinburgh is a world-leading research-intensive higher education institution, committed to addressing current and future challenges faced locally and globally. The University's Strategy 2030 takes a values-led approach to teaching, research and innovation to meet these challenges, only possible through strong local and international relationships. The University of Edinburgh is a world-leading research-intensive higher education institution, committed to addressing current and future challenges faced locally and globally. The University's Strategy 2030 takes a values-led approach to teaching, research and innovation to meet these challenges, only possible through strong local and international relationships. The University contributes diverse expertise to the Thriving Green Spaces project across three work streams. OPENspace research centre and Landscape Architecture at Edinburgh College of Art support the project through multi-disciplinary research and co-design experience. GeoSciences, EDINA and the Department for Social Responsibility and Sustainability offer digital mapping and community engagement research capabilities.
The Edinburgh Green Spaces Forum - EGSF brings together the skills and knowledge of an army of volunteers who make up the many Friends Groups within the City of Edinburgh. They work hard to support our parks staff. They carry out a range of tasks and major projects in parks, natural heritage sites and cemeteries. They bring a range of skills and expertise to help maintain and improve our green spaces.
The Trust champions the cause of wildlife through policy and campaign work. They support best practice through hands-on conservation and partnerships. They inspire people to take positive action through its education and engagement activities.
We are a dedicated and hard working team who are all passionate about our wonderful green spaces in the city.
Linda brings to the project a wealth of development and project experience built up over 25 years in both the private and public sector. As a Landscape Manager, she is interested in all aspects of green space management design, conservation, science and community involvement. Linda joined the Council in 2014 to work on the £8 million Saughton Park Restoration Project. She is delighted to be have been appointed as Project Manager for the Thriving Green Spaces project. Outside work, Linda loves pottering about in her garden and striding out for long walks in the beautiful countryside and beaches that are on our doorstep.
Des has a background in the Irish civil service where he worked on a range of public policy issues. Since moving to Edinburgh, he has completed a postgraduate diploma in countryside management. Des has pursued his interest in green spaces through active volunteering and joining the Thriving Green Spaces team.
Alexandra joined the Thriving Green Spaces team as an Ecologist in late 2022. She has a background in ecology, conservation, community engagement and science communication. Previous roles have seen her as a site manager of a local nature reserve, engaging people with green space through events to enhance wellbeing, working on urban river restoration projects and undertaking surveys, such as wetland bird surveys in the uplands of Fife. She has worked in conservation across the UK, from Cornwall to Scotland, and holds an MSc in Conservation and Biodiversity from the University of Exeter. In her free time you'll find her out walking in the Pentlands or along the coast.
Alex has a background in working with and engaging community groups across Glasgow and North Lanarkshire to improve local greenspaces to address climate change impacts and biodiversity loss. He has also worked for a private company as an Ecological Consultant, completing a range of surveys and projects across Scotland involving protected species constraints and advising on necessary mitigation. He holds an MSc in Wildlife Biology and Conservation from Edinburgh Napier and outside of work he is passionate about botany and enjoys wild camping and hill walking.
We also want to thank our former colleagues who have moved on for their work on the first phase of the project between 2019 and 2022:
Pete McDougall - green spaces community engagement specialist as well as an all-rounder, previously the Development Officer on the Saughton Park project. Pete moved back to a job in West Edinburgh in September 2021, with charity Health All Round. He retains links with Thriving Greenspaces work on health and wellbeing in this role.
Hannah Fleming, the project support officer for the Thriving Green spaces team.
Diane Cassidy, who worked for us on community, accessibility, public health, place-making and volunteering, now with Fife Council.
Christina McCallum, our landscape architect, now with the City of Edinburgh Council team on 20 Minute Neighbourhoods as an urban designer.
Donya Davidson, our first project ecologist who moved on in spring 2022 to Nature Scot, after completing work for Thriving Greenspaces on the Edinburgh Nature Network, Scotland's first.
Ian Robertson, who worked for us across the Thiving Greenspaces Strategy, alongside working on the masterplans for parks across Edinburgh, including Inch Park. Ian now works with greenspace scotland.