Innovation Exchange

Practical management of paths and greenspaces


Key activities

Benefits and impacts


Further Information

Several local authorities have worked in partnership with communities to help them to take on the practical management of paths and greenspaces by providing training and materials and seeking volunteer input.  The Core Path & Greenspace Team project turns this approach on its head and asks communities for ideas and funds but provides them with man-power to achieve the tasks. Using employability support, a team of young people are working on core paths and greenspace projects, prioritised by communities, thus tackling the national priorities of youth unemployment whilst supporting communities and the environment. To date, 80% of core paths and many greenspace projects have been completed and 6 out or 8 young people have gone on to an apprenticeship or employment.

Theme: Community Planning and Empowerment

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Core path upgrades and improvements are prioritised and supported by local communities.

Community empowerment and involvement. Paths improved for all users. Increase feeling of ownership of the path network in the local community.

The project needs a dedicated member of staff to support communities with path specifications and grant applications and then to supervise the team of young people engaged to carry out the work.  Joint working of the team with community volunteers also works well.  This isn’t a cheap way to carry out path improvements, but the benefits of integration of young people with older, often retired, community volunteers is very valuable. The quality and approach of the supervisor of the team is critical to the project success.

This project has now ended due to lack of funding for the support costs and a reduction in the staff resources available in the Access Team to keep the project going. We have considered a similar approach using a local social enterprise company, but it hasn’t been possible to deliver anything as yet.

Contact details:

To find out more about this case study, please contact:


Alison Irvine

Team Leader (Access)

Fife Council

01592 583239

Case study added to site: June 2016

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