“London is not just a city, it’s a landscape,” he said. “It’s a landscape that’s home not just to nearly nine million people, but there are as many trees. We share this city with 15,000 other species of life and I don’t think that urban life is worth any less than that life that we see in maybe those more distant places from cities.”
Made in collaboration with Friends of the Earth, Jack Smith and Benjamin Zephaniah, here’s my new film – The UK in 100 Seconds.
Outdoor Classroom Day is an international effort to get more children playing and learning outdoors at school. Nearly 2 million children and 19,000 schools have got involved during 2018 so far.
I was delighted when Nat Geo Kids & Dirt is Good asked me to host this Facebook Live to help promote the day.
The Canal & River Trust asked me to collaborate on a short video about my relationship with canals. I used the opportunity to describe why I take so much pleasure in walking along them.
“The urban explorer and ‘guerilla geographer’ is leading the campaign to make London a national park city.
What is the London National Park City campaign?
The concept is my own ‘invention’, although it’s not a new idea. We have enclosed and protected green spaces for centuries. Urban nature conservation is in the DNA of town and city dwellers, from private gardens to sprawling nature reserves. Britain has already exported the idea of urban nature conservation around the world, so the only contribution I am making is stressing that the whole of London’s urban landscape should be part of the National Park City. That means all the parks, gardens, rivers, industrial sites – a recognition of the collective value of the whole urban landscape.”
Read the whole interview on the Ramblers website.
“London is preparing to become the world’s first ‘National Park City’, with thanks to the backing of the Mayor of London, members of the London Assembly and many of the city’s councillors.
“London becoming a National Park City is the perfect way to celebrate everything that has been done to make the capital so green and diverse. It’s also an exciting challenge to make the city even more green, wild and enjoyable,” Dan Raven-Ellison, founder of the London National Park City campaign, told Lonely Planet.”
Read the full article on Lonely Planet.
Earlier this week I was interviewed on RT’s Going Underground about air pollution, making London greener, and the “renaissance of geography”. This is a shortened version of that interview.
The first ever BBC Countryfile on cities started with a segment on the movement to make London a National Park City. It was wonderful to meet Countryfile presenter Anita Rani on Parkland Walk to chat with her about the campaign.
“Fundamentally this is about improving the health of all Londoners, no matter how wild they are..”
Watch from 01:50 on BBC iPlayer.
“With 8m trees and 14,000 species of wildlife, the capital should be recognised as an ecological as well as a financial centre, say campaigners — and the mayor agrees”
Read this feature by Simon Usborne on my 563km big walk around London on the Financial Times website.
Photo by Tom Jamieson.