Private contractor idverde – the largest greenspace provider in Europe – takes over park
maintenance for Merton and Sutton councils from 1 February 2017. We were concerned that
Merton staff might lose their jobs, but idverde’s director of park management strategy, Patrick
Phillips, came to talk at our recent Forum meeting and assured us that there will be no
compulsory redundancies. idverde is already responsible for many London parks, including
Wandsworth’s green spaces, Regent’s Park, Primrose Hill, Crystal Palace Park and the
Olympic Park. Mr Phillips said he was in charge of the Crystal Palace masterplan 25 years
ago and has a special interest in historic parks. He intends to push for Wimbledon Park to get
green flag status, something we strongly support. He also said he will look at measures to
protect or reinstate the grass after events like Bonfire Night and the Christmas tree stall.